Urban exploring can uncover plenty of interesting items for those willing to either put their safety or freedom at risk. That's what drew many to an abandoned wildlife park in Melbourne, Australia earlier this year.
The treasure at the center of the abandoned earthworm park is a Great White shark left in a damaged tank full of a formaldehyde solution that turned an eerie green. The "ghost" shark lies within the tank, a perfect specimen that was never supposed to be there according to Don Kransky at Vice Australia.
The writer took a journey to see the shark before it was gone forever. Many had been inspired to travel there for the same reasons by a video on YouTube, leading to the shark to be damaged by others exploring and then deciding to destroy rather than preserve for the next person.
"I could see someone had pried the roof off the shark's tanks, allowing some idiot to throw in a broken television," Kransky noted in his article at Vice. " And a network of cracks had appeared on the tank's glass where someone had gone at it with a hammer or some other blunt object."
The result is some dangerous fumes from the leaking formaldehyde and plenty of pointless damages. It also leads to an interesting story about a shark that was initially caught in 1998 off the coast of southern Australia. It was first displayed at a Victorian ecotourism center devoted to fur seals according to Vice. The shark, named Rosie, got around quite a bit from there.
By early 2000, the site fell through and the shark was left without a home before being shipped off to its current home at the abandoned earthworm park, the end results of conservation efforts for the Giant Gippsland Earthworm according to Kransky's article.
A sale in 2003 brought about the prospect of a possible move to the Melbourne Museum for the shark. A move that never happened, leading us to the today where the park is in decline after closing in 2012. The shark is left open to the elements due to damage to its tank, with its viral fame drawing more gawkers in to potential shorten its post-life fame even more.
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Luckily the shark was rescued after the initial story went viral. After the owners of the original location became aware of people trespassing to see the beast, they had it moved to a local business called Crystal World according to News.com.au.0comments
The company will soon move the shark to a new tank as part of its Prehistoric Journeys Exhibition Centre in Victoria. Far better than its initial destination according to Crystal World's Sharon Williamson.
"Otherwise, she was going to go to landfill," Williamson told the Herald Sun. "It was quite logistical, getting it out here and emptying it."