Essay Example on Steve Irwin: Wildlife Conservationist, Educator & TV Star

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  6
Wordcount:  1433 Words
Date:  2023-05-08


Stephen Robert Irwin, commonly known as Steve Irwin, was an Australian conservationist of wildlife, an educator, and a television celebrity (Glenn, 2018). He attained global fame as exuberantly, the host of television wildlife documentaries and other series like The Crocodile Hunter, which he featured in from 1992 until his untimely death in 2006 (Louson, 2018). Irwin was born on the 22nd of February 1962, in Essendon, which is located in Victoria, Australia (Taylor, 2019). He, however, died on the 4th of September 2006 in the Douglas Port, Queensland (Taylor, 2019). His tragic death occurred off the Coast of Douglas port while filming a new television program. The cause of his death was a pierce into his chest from a stingray barb that went through his heart (Taylor, 2019). The sting resulted in cardiac arrest that eventually killed him.

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Steve Irwin was the beloved son to Bob and Lyn Irwin, both of who were wildlife naturalists. He displayed a love for animals throughout his entire life, since he grew up in the Reptile and Fauna Park at their home in Queensland. While growing up, he dominated the chores of taking care of the animals and feeding them (Potter & Hill, 2017). Without hesitation, he had self-establishment with the government of Queensland on the encounter of Australia's program of crocodile relocation, where the reptiles were moved to appropriate humane locations without using tranquilizers. A factor that he dominantly portrayed in his 1999 Crocodile Hunter television series (Cohen, 2019).

Irwin married a fellow naturalist, Baines Terri Irwin, in 1992, with whom he sired one daughter, Bindi Irwin, on the 24th of July, 1998, and later Robert Irwin (Cohen, 2019). Terri often accompanied Steve in his television series and other animal-related adventures till his death. Irwin's passion for the animals' life made his wife join him to enable them to pursue common interests.

Wildlife Enthusiast

The late Steve Irwin alias Steveo, the Crocodile Hunter, involved himself in great heroic actions that shocked the world. Despite minor critics, he played with dangerous animals publicly, many across the world regarding such actions as heroic and legendary. No wonder he was loved by many globally. He did what others thought suicidal. Steve handled the most venomous species of a snake in the world comfortably (Brennan,2017). He did it uniquely and with much ease since he had spent a better part of his life around such dangerous reptiles. Though Steve was never immune to the creatures' power, he experienced several instances where he could be bitten by crocodiles while in the act of feeding them. Despite the injuries, he was always nice to them.

Irwin was enthusiastic about the animals since he even cried upon the death of one of his crocodiles, which he named Mary (Cohen, 2019). He gave Mary a proper send-off and even wrote it a eulogy. In another scenario, Irwin had his nose bitten by a bearded dragon, yet took that kindly and respected it. Steve was not even at one-point immune to critics concerning his antics. His main concern revolved around the animals and how he could make their habitat a better place.

While with his son Robert (who was then one month old) in his arms, Irwin received a severe backlash while giving food to a crocodile in Queensland at the Zoo of Australia (Keighley, 2017). He later assured his critics that Robert was safe. Irwin grabbed the fiercest Taipan inland snake by its tail and played with it comfortably as he explained that it had adequate poison quantity that could kill 100 people his body size in just a single bite.

Steve had many thoughts from which he came up with many quotes. He understood how complicated human nature is. The most memorable one is in one of his television shows when he said how easy the crocodiles were as they will always try to kill and eat people, and how hard people are that they sometimes begin by being your friend in pretense (Glenn, 2018). He explained that it was a colorful reminder to us that people's trust should be earned because they are never what they look like. He also had a belief in compromise. He believed in the willingness to conserve the planet and the protection of animals, as he also recognized the fact that humankind, too, has the right to live on earth (Louson, 2018). He showed his compromise when he said that he sincerely believed in grazing and cutting down of trees that were meant for forestry so that everyone on the planet can get food. He also emphasized that every individual on earth must compromise.

Steve's Value for Education

Steve valued education and put it first. In his interview with The Scientific American in 2001, he claimed that he was a seeker of knowledge and the most important thing in the world is education (Potter & Hill, 2017). Irwin believed that offering education to the viewers of his television programs regarding the planet and the animals on it, would inculcate in them the zeal of protecting them. He had the intention of making his audiences learn from the things he once did wrong. He also influenced other people and made them believe in the same things he believed in passionately.

Regarding education, Irwin believed that if they could make people excited about animals then it would be easier to save them. Out of the money that Irwin and his wife Terri made from his films and merchandise, they were able to establish a hospital for wildlife in the Australia Zoo. The zoo is currently rescuing, rehabilitating, and releasing approximately 7000 animals annually (Keighley, 2017). Irwin aimed at increasing the number of zoos in certain designated areas and expanding the sizes of the existing ones to increase their overall capacity. This is evident from his contribution to the expansion of the Australia Zoo that is nearly 1000 acres.

Irwin's Comparison to Sharks

Just like sharks, Steve Irwin contributed a lot to ensure a healthy planet. Sharks are known for their roles in balancing the ecosystem of the oceans, and boosting the economy through tourism (Tucker et al., 2018). In the same way, Irwin fought towards protecting the entire planet by conserving the environment, protecting the animals, and also boosting the economy of Australia through the Australia Zoo that attracted many tourists across the globe, hence generating income. He kept on preaching, teaching, influencing, and changing people's attitudes towards protecting the entire planet (Macko, 2019). He used his television and live shows to show how wildlife is supposed to be loved and protected, as they also have a purpose on earth.


Generally, Stephen Robert Irwin was a dedicated and devoted wildlife conservationist who kept preaching how important animals are important to the planet, regardless of how dangerous they might seem to human beings. He featured in many television series just to let the world acknowledge the need for protecting animals and the entire earth. He hosted popular television series and documentaries concerning wildlife. One of his memorable wildlife television series was The Crocodile Hunter, which he hosted from 1992 until the time he died in 2006. His enthusiasm for wildlife even led to his death. He indeed loved animals and died protecting them.


Brennan, C. (2017). Australia's Northern Safari. M/C Journal, 20.

Cohen, E. (2019). Crocodile Tourism: The emasculation of ferocity. Tourism Culture & Communication, 19(2), 83-102.

Glenn, I. (2018). 'Silent Hunter'and its influence on wildlife documentary. Communitas, 23, 220-228.

Keighley, M. (2017). Cultural diversity and meta-population dynamics in Australian palm cockatoos (Probosciger aterrimus); the legacy of landscape and biogeographic history.

Louson, E. M. (2018). Never Before Seen: Spectacle, Staging, and Story in Wildlife Film's Blue-Chip Renaissance.

Louson, E. (2018). Taking spectacle seriously: Wildlife film and the legacy of natural history display. Science in context, 31(1), 15-38.

Macko, S. A. (2019). Increasing Challenges to the Future Marine Environment. In Cooperation and Engagement in the Asia-Pacific Region (pp. 161-176). Brill Nijhoff.

Potter, A., & Hill, L. (2017). Cultivating global celebrity: Bindi Irwin, FremantleMedia and the commodification of grief. Celebrity Studies, 8(1), 35-50.

Taylor, A. (2019). 'Steve is twice the Aussie icon you will ever be': Germaine Greer, the Crocodile Hunter's death, and nationalistic misogyny. European Journal of Cultural Studies, 22(5-6), 630-645.

Tucker, J. P., Santos, I. R., Crocetti, S., & Butcher, P. (2018). Whale carcass strandings on beaches: Management challenges, research needs, and examples from Australia. Ocean & Coastal Management, 163, 323-338.

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