Polar bear Victor is now wandering in the icefields in heaven

Aug 22nd, 2020 | By | Category: The Memory Lane

22.8.2020 – Source: The Yorkshire Wildlife Park

Yorkshire Wildlife Park announces with deep sadness today (21th of August) that Victor, the country’s oldest and most popular polar bear, has passed away.


Despite the best efforts of the veterinary team who attended when 22 year old Victor was unexpectedly taken ill earlier today, Victor sadly suffered terminal kidney failure and vets had no choice but to put him to sleep.

Victor was born at Rostock Zoo, Germany before moving to Rhenen in the Netherlands but after retiring from the European breeding programme he was rehomed at YWP in 2014. During his time in the breeding programme he fathered 13 cubs and has many grandchildren around the world.

Upon retirement at the park, Victor spent his days enjoying the lakes and expansive habitat in Project Polar, one of the largest reserves in the world. He was joined by four other polar bears over the following five years.


The Directors of Yorkshire Wildlife Park would like to thank the veterinary team from Portland House Veterinary Group who responded so quickly and who have worked and supported staff In caring for Victor since he arrived in Yorkshire.

The Park would also like to thank the dedicated staff team who have loved and cared for Victor since his arrival and who today are saddened by the loss of one who was a favourite at the park for staff and visitors alike.

Victor was a great ambassador for his species, inspiring generations and drawing attention to the plight of his species in the wild and the threat of climate change. He will be greatly missed by everyone.

The following three photos are taken by Ralph Morton – a great fan of Victor




Yorkshire Wildlife Park

Share |

Leave a comment »

  1. Dear Mervi
    Thank you publishing such a quick report about Victor.
    I took those photos during my last visit to YWP in January. The bear creeping behind Victor is of course Nobby. I was expecting to visit again in March but it got interrupted.
    Sadly the big male Polars do not live as long as the smaller females.

  2. Dear Mervi!
    Oh no! This is really sad news. What a pity that he passed away much too early.
    I feel sorry for everyone who loved this big and impressive bear and my heartfelt sympathy goes to the staff of the YWP.
    Rest in peace dear Victor!
    It is a comforting imagination that he is wandering now in the eternal icefields in heaven together with many other bears we loved and will miss forever.


  3. Dear Ralph and Mervi!
    Victor was a wonderful bear. Unfortunately he went too early over the rainbow bridge.

  4. Hello Mervi
    Thank you Victor for Rocky Jelle Henk Ewa Sprinter Walker Swimmer Sesi Siku Lynn Luka Akiak Sura.
    You big bear.

    Erik from Arnhem

  5. Dear Mervi and Ralph,, thanks for information and pictures. Sorry to read that Victor has passed the rainbow bridge.
    Hugs from Copenhagen

  6. dear Mervi, this is a very sad news
    dear Ralph, thank you for the nice pictures of Victor, it is touching to see him with Nobby, I am glad you could visit Victor and his friends and you could see that he lives in a wonderful home
    Victor many good friends and all your good keepers will miss you for ever, schlaf gut
    sad greetings

  7. Liebe Mervi,

    Victor war ein beeindruckender Bär und durch dich, lieber Ralph, haben wir in vielen Berichten und Fotos von seinem Altersitz in YWP erfahren und sehen können.
    Nobby hatte mit ihm einen väterlich-bärigen Freund gefunden und viele seiner hübschen Nachkommen tragen seine Gene in anderen Zoos weiter.

    Ruhe in Frieden, du weißer, schöner Riese!

  8. Liebe Mervi,
    viel zu früh mit nur 22Jahren!
    Wir werden ihn schmerzlich vermissen.
    Traurige Grüße Moni K

  9. Farewell dear Victor!

    Hugs, Erika