VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – The Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center is mourning the loss of a 17-year-old Komodo dragon at their aquarium.

According to a news release, 17-year-old Sanchez was an active and precocious dragon who loved resting in the sunlight, overlooking Owls Creek, and coming nose-to-nose with guests who visited him.

Sanchez was born in January 2005 at the Columbus Zoo and joined the Virginia Aquarium in 2007 when the Restless Planet exhibit gallery opened.

The aquarium’s vet and animal care team observed that Sanchez’s health was declining. Supportive care and diagnostics were initiated but Sanchez’s health did not improve with treatment.

Sanchez was provided medical support to keep him comfortable, but after carefully studying his condition, the Aquarium team made the difficult decision to euthanize him.

A cause for the changes in Sanchez’s health has not been determined and a necropsy is being conducted by the Virginia Aquarium.