Viral great white saved

Rosie, being preserved at the abandoned facility.

By Rowan Forster

A taxidermy 16-foot Great White Shark will be rehoused at a Devon Meadows business – set to be relocated from an abandoned Bass wildlife park.

Rosie, currently being preserved in formaldehyde at the defunct Wildlife Wonderland, was at the centre of a community group’s push to be put on exhibition at Gumbuya World.

In recent weeks, video of Rosie in her tank resurfaced on Youtube, going viral around the world.

Due to the increased publicity, heartless vandals trespassed onto the site and reportedly tried to smash the creature’s tank with a sledgehammer.

Large cracks have since appeared, with chemicals slowly seeping into the facility.

As a result of the continued attacks, Rosie needed a new home, or else she would have been disposed of.

The Save Rosie the Shark community group repeatedly pleaded with Gumbuya World to re-home the apex predator, in posts to over 4,000 followers.

“We need to act fast and save Rosie,” the group wrote at the time .

“She needs to be given the final resting place she rightly deserves.

“Gumbuya World can save her.”

The group had set its sights on the Tynong amusement park as a potential home for the ancient shark.

However, Crystal World – the host of one of the largest exhibitions of crystals, fossils and meteorites in the southern hemisphere – emerged to lend a helping hand.

The rescue was arranged by Australian Animal Rescue Incorporated, in conjunction with the owner of Crystal World.

A spokesperson for the organisation said: “We at AAR, are proud to have been part of saving the iconic Rosie and cannot wait until she is ready for her close-up at her new home.”

It has resided at Wildlife Wonderland, in Bass, since the park was closed in 2012.

Her body has been preserved in chemicals, but the liquid inside has slowly been evaporating.

Rosie’s dorsal fin has since been exposed to the air, and if nobody acts to rehouse the shark, she will likely be destroyed.

During the ordeal, a Facebook page with the title, ‘Gumbuya World should re-home Rosie the Shark’ garnered more than 250 followers.

Patrick Coate, from the group, believes the regional theme park would be the ideal location to showcase the beast.

“It’s not even that far away and it would bring so many people,” he said.

“This has garnered interest all across the world – websites overseas are even reporting on it.

“Hopefully they can, or someone can, before it is too late.”

The shark is expected to be removed as soon as Friday.

Rosie was captured in South Australian tuna fishing nets in 1998 and was found dead when she was discovered by fishermen.

She has been preserved since.

Her story has garnered significant interest due to the fact that great white sharks cannot be kept in captivity alive.

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