A CAMPAIGN has been launched by students to create a bronze life-size statue of a much-loved duck.

Long Boi, a mallard Indian runner cross, which became a viral hit on social media for being unusually tall at 2ft 4in, has not been seen on the University of York's west campus where he lived for two months.

The university has now concluded that he must have died.

The University of York Students' Union has now launched a campaign with a fundraising goal of £10,000 to commission and install a bronze, life-size statue of Long Boi in his memory, following requests from students and the wider community.

On the crowdfunding page, Pierrick Roger, the president of the university's students' union, said: "It is with the greatest sadness that we have had to announce the passing of the most cherished member of the York community, our beloved Long Boi.

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"For many, Long Boi was much more than just a very long duck or just another university mascot. His 2ft 4in brought a smile to all of us, allowing us to see that it was okay to be a bit different, and for that, we miss him already.

"His loss will be widely felt and we know he can never be replaced. His Royal Löngthness was the King of Campus West, the ruler of the lake, the pride and joy of students."

The exact location of the statue is yet to be confirmed but it will be within the university's campus.

York Press: Long Boi RIPLong Boi RIP (Image: submitted)

The union has set a fundraising tier system. If it raises less than £1,000, it will donate the money to a good cause within the university; up to £2,000 will be used to install a memorial bench with a plaque in Long Boi's memory; while £2,000 or more will see the creation of the statue.

The students' union has pledged to donate any excess funds to good causes within the university, either to Mentally Fit York - a fund to transform mental health - or to a Travel Abroad Award in the form of a York Futures Scholarship named after Long Boi.

Pierrick added: "Long Boi was held in such high esteem by so many, and we want to make sure our memorial reflects this. 

"He was loved by all and a true celebrity, rubbing shoulders (or necks) with the likes of James Corden and Greg James.

"Although Long Boi became a pop cult icon for many, his popularity also brought into the mainstream the importance of looking after our animal neighbours on campus and protecting wildlife.

"Thank you so much to all those helping us make this a reality. Long live Long Boi."

To help the students commission the statue, please click here to donate.