The Vietnam National Museum of Nature under the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology is building a new exhibition hall on the evolution of living things, which is expected to help it become the leading museum of its kind in Vietnam.

The 340 billion VND (16 million USD) project, which began in 2012, has entered its final stage and is scheduled to open later this year.

The display, covering nearly 300 square metres on the first floor of the museum, will contain three parts, namely the origin of life, the history of life and current life, using a wide range of specimens to give a clear and concrete presentation of the evolutionary process during periods of the Earth.

The museum will also offer 3D films that educate students on nature and environmental protection.

The Vietnam National Museum of Nature is responsible for collecting, preserving, displaying and researching objects and documents relating to Vietnam ’s nature with the aim to spread knowledge, educate, carry out scientific research and promote tourism.

Established in 2006, the museum has collected hundreds of specimens of animals, including ocean sunfish, a 18.5-tonne giant whale, a fossilised crocodile skull, and those of precious and rare species such as elephants, tigers, bears, monkeys, langurs, peacocks and pheasants.

The museum has preserved a set of fossils of gastropods and another of ancient cycadales, both dating back to 20.3 million years ago and were found in Na Duong town, Loc Binh district, the northern mountainous province of Lang Son.

Recently, the museum completed a collection of over 800 fossil specimens of ancient living things from 203 to 175 million years old such as ammonites, bivalves, gastropods and gymnosperms.

The Vietnam National Museum of Nature now has more than 40,000 specimens, including over 400 specimens of mammals, 4,000 specimens of reptiles and amphibians, 300 specimens of snails, 400 specimens of fish, 20,000 of insects and 10,000 flora specimens. Some of them are the only of their kind in Vietnam.-VNA