thumb|150px|Shrek features on the cover of his biography by John PerriamShrek
( 1994 – 6 June 2011) was a Merino wether
(castrated male sheep
) belonging to Bendigo Station
, a sheep station
, New Zealand
, who gained international fame in 2004 after he avoided being caught and shorn
for six years. Merinos are normally shorn annually, but Shrek apparently hid in caves, avoiding muster. He was named after the fictional character
in books and films of the same name.
After being caught on 15 April 2004, the wether was shorn by a professional in 20 minutes on 28 April. The shearing was broadcast on national television in New Zealand. His fleece contained enough wool
to make suits for 20 men, weighing 27 kg (60 lb) — an average Merino fleece weighs around 4.5 kg (9.9 lb),
Shrek became a national icon. He was taken to parliament to meet the New Zealand Prime Minister
, Helen Clark
, in May 2004. To celebrate his tenth birthday, 30 months after his initial shearing, Shrek was shorn again on an iceberg floating off the coast of Dunedin
, New Zealand.
Shrek was put down on 6 June 2011 on the advice of a veterinary surgeon