Patrick, the oldest known bare-nosed wombat in the world, has died.
“It is with sadness and heavy hearts that Greg Parker and all the staff are mourning the loss of our bucky toothed Patrick the Wombat,” they wrote. “Patrick the Wombat came to the park as an orphan after his mother was hit by a car and was raised by Greg and his family.”
Veterinarians made the decision to euthanize Patrick after a “sudden decline in his health,” according to a park statement. He was surrounded by his caretakers when he died.
In the wild, bare-nosed wombats — also known as common wombats, though Patrick was anything but common — are believed to live to be about 15 years old.
Patrick was famously a virgin and his caretakers once even made a Tinder profile for him. Though he apparently never found that special wombat lady, he spent his life surrounded by the platonic love of his caretakers at the wildlife park and adoration of fans around the world. Patrick also achieved international recognition as “wombassador” for the park, with CNN naming him one of the “greatest city mascots” in the world in 2014.
When Patrick was young, his human caretakers attempted to release him back into the wild multiple times, but found him brutalized by other wombats. So Greg Parker, founder of Ballarat Wildlife Park, gave him a home for good.
“He’s not built for the wild,” Parker told The Courier in 2014. “He’s way too soft.”
Weighing in at around 85 pounds, news outlets often named Patrick as the largest wombat in the world, though it’s unclear if this title was official.
On his Facebook page, the park listed Patrick’s “personal interests” as riding in his wheelbarrow, cuddling, and eating freshly picked grass.
This story has been updated to note that Patrick’s caretakers tried and failed to release him back into the wild as a young wombat.