Kazakhstan's only Paleontological Museum of the Mesozoic period is situated in Atyrau. The museum is small, its exposure occupies only two rooms, but uniqueness of the exhibits collected here are the envy of many museums in the world. All the exhibits are original, most of them were found in the Atyrau region. The museum is incomparable by the fact that its entire exhibition was assembled by one person - the local historian, paleontologist Yuri Alexandrovich Pastukhov. Over the period of 20 years, Yuri Pastukhov along with his disciples went on expeditions to the Atyrau region and collected unprecedented evidences of the remote past of our planet, in such a way, the exposition of the future museum was gradually evolved. The creation of the Museum became almost a private initiative and within many years it existed as a small private museum, recently it has been managed to find a sponsor and support of the regional museum of local history. The Paleontological Museum has become a branch, and that will allow to increase the exposure and obtain funding for new expeditions. The building was repaired and the entire museum was reconstructed thanks to the sponsorship. Now it is built in a clear logical chain.
The whole exposition of the museum is called "Welcome to the bank of the Chalky sea", visitors look at from one stand to another, and see all the stages of emergence and development of the life on our planet. New sections appeared in the museum – "Formation of paleontology as a science" and "Extinct large mammals", thanks to them, the visitors can observe the evolution, rooted in the hundreds of millions of years ago. In total, the museum collected hundreds of artifacts - teeth of prehistoric sharks, remains of Megalodons, plesiosaurs and shellfish, as well as the remains of mammoths, woolly rhinoceroses, primitive aurochs and deer that lived 100-150 million years ago. There are about 70% of remains of the Chalky period demonstrated in the West Kazakhstan. Many of them are so unique that they evade precise scientific definition and need to be studied. It has to be said that all the finds of Yuri Pastukhov are not accidental, the Atyrau region as almost all of the West Kazakhstan is a kind of paradise for a paleontologist. Hundreds of millions of years ago, waves of a vast sea lapped, and prehistoric fish, marine animals and giant sharks harboured in the territory of the Atyrau region where now the hot boundless steppe is.
The whole territory of the Western Kazakhstan was in the middle of a huge sea, stretching from the vicinities of Moscow to western Siberia. By the way, thanks to this prehistoric water, oil appeared in Kazakhstan. The remains of algae, fish and shellfish have transformed into black gold for tens of millions of years. Breath taking chalk plateaus of the Caspian, among which Aktologay plateau shows up, are of great interest to the world of science. Despite the fact that we have, almost under our feet, such unique paleontological monuments, yet they have not been studied enough, in-depth investigation on Aktologai could have become a sensation and up-end many of the modern ideas of what the Earth millions of years ago was. The Paleontological Museum in Atyrau could be of great scientific value and become a starting point for the development of Kazakhstani paleontological science. Atyrau paleontological museum is open and always waiting for its visitors, and its experienced staff can always help to understand the prehistoric nature of the world which is not quite simple.