The skeletons are original specimens collected by a natural history dealer and taxidermist from 19th century Prague.
The skeletons are original specimens collected by a natural history dealer and taxidermist from 19th century Prague.

Rare animal skeletons stolen from Sydney uni

Police are hunting a gang of bone thieves after rare animal skeletons were stolen from the University of Sydney.

Detectives said the bones of a hippopotamus, a hawksbill sea turtle, a slow loris and a dog were stolen from Haswell Museum of Zoology at the university's Camperdown campus on November 7 or 8.

Acting Inspector Mark George said the "rare and valuable" specimens were collected by a taxidermist from Prague and date back to the 1880s.

"We hope the community can provide us with some fresh information that helps us recover the skeletons, and return them to the museum which is involved in the teaching of undergraduate students," he said.

"Three other skeletons were recovered from outside the museum - they appear to have been left behind by the offenders after the break in, along with other items that are being forensically examined by specialist police."