Shark’s Kooweerup drive-by

Rosie on the back of the truck, being transported to Cranbourne. 190762_01

By Rowan Forster

The two-tonne taxidermy Great White Shark abandoned at a closed Bass wildlife park has been rehomed.

Rosie, the 16-foot beast, was lifted onto the back of a truck and driven down the Bass Highway – past a welcoming party on Kooweerup – en route to Crystal World.

Dozens stopped to observe the creature as it made its way along the highway towards Devon Meadows.

It marks the end of a two-month campaign to have the animal relocated from the Bass site, which had become a hotspot for trespassers and vandals.

For Lang Lang’s Monica Greaves, who watched as the freighter carrying the apex predator passed-by, it was a heart-warming story with a wider ramification for sharks.

“This became huge all around the world, right in our backyard,” she said.

“Hopefully it makes people wake up and realise that sharks are beautiful, majestic creatures and they should be preserved.

“I’m sure heaps of people will be waiting to visit Crystal World when they eventually have her on display.”

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 was captured in South Australia in 1998.

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

When video footage of the shark’s location emerged, vandals went to the site and tried to damage the tank.

The owners became fed up with the unwanted visitors and recently arranged to transport the giant shark to a nearby business called Crystal World.

The company’s website describes itself as having “the world’s largest exhibitions of Crystals, Fossils, Meteorites, Gems, Jewellery, and Minerals”.

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