Moving Megamouth Feature

Video | Updated 3 years ago

On 22 September 2010 Megamouth III, the WA Museum's extraordinarily rare and valuable megamouth shark, was moved from Perth into a purpose built tank at the WA Museum – Maritime in Fremantle.

Moving Megamouth was a massive logistical activity that took over one year to plan. Over 7000 litres of ethanol had to be disposed of, a fragile and priceless specimen had to moved across a city, and extensive and ongoing conservation processes had to be developed.


Megamouth is presently in a 70 per cent alkali solution and that is very flammable and dangerous that's why has been outside. and because the Francis St building is going to be demolished in preparation for building a new museum we have to find Megamouth a new home and a new solution. so I conducted experiments on small sharks and we've shown that by changing alcohol to glycerol and water we can actually improve the look of Megamouth, improve his preservation and more importantly bring it inside we are able to monitor the way in which the shark is responding by measuring the density changes solution because as the lighter alcohol comes out from the previous storage environment into the more dense glycerol the density drops and we can tell already that more the four hundred and fifty litres of alcohol solution has come out. In a few weeks time the head will sink into a nice resting position and than early in the new year we would be able to put in more glycerol and begin the next phase of the treatment