“You see me running around wrestling crocs and grabbing venomous snakes,” he told People, “but we’re into conservation. That’s our passion. That’s my whole aim in life” (Amerman 2) world famous host of The Crocodile Hunter, Stephen Robert Irwin once said. Irwin's undeniable passion for animals were not only showed in his words throughout his life but also his conservation movements which led him to a life of wildlife exploration. Physical strength, mental power, and many other characteristics drew the viewers of The Crocodile Hunter to support the famous Australian wildlife fanatic. Irwin also once said, “Fear is a natural thing that us humans have. It keeps us alive. So every time I go in on a venomous snake, a crocodile, a bear, a cougar, a tiger shark-any wild animal- I get a little scared, a little nervy. Fear is a good thing” (Shears 38). Irwin played a significant role in wildlife conservation throughout his entire life by relocating reptiles, appearing on television conservation channels, running the Australian Zoo wildlife centre, and participating in many other projects including wildlife preservation which over the years earned him the name, The Crocodile Hunter.
Irwin was born near Melbourne on February 22nd, 1962, son of Bob and Lyn Irwin (Baker 15). Not shortly after he was born, Irwin’s parents decided to open Beerwah National Park to fulfill their dream of opening a wildlife park. “In 1973, when Steve was 11, the wildlife centre, then known as the Beerwah Reptile Park, opened up for the first time. What a contrast it was to today’s slick Australia Zoo venture, but as Steve was to so often point out through his career, his parents had to start somewhere, learning all the way” (Shears 70). Irwin went to Landsborough State School and Caloundra State High School in Queensland (Shears 59). While Irwin had no formal education growing up, Dr. Leo Smith of the American Museum of Natural History in Manhattan said that although Steve had no scientific degree, ‘he could be considered a biologist rather than just a television personality. He was knowledgeable and seemed to care passionately about wildlife’ (Baker 25).The majority of the time Irwin helped the family business by participating in feeding and maintenance of the animals (GBIC 1).
Throughout his life Irwin did many amazing things. For example, Irwin asked for a 12 foot Scrub Python for his sixth birthday, and that’s what he received (Baker 14). In 1997, while on a fishing trip on the coast of Queensland with his father, Irwin discovered a new species of turtle. Later given the honor of naming the newly discovered species, he named it Irwin's turtle (Elseya irwini) after his family (Dutton 191). The irony in this is that the Elseya irwini is actually facing extinction. Irwin even built his own boat, The Croc 1, to aide in crocodile research. (Baker 24) Irwin often traveled to many exotic locations in search of the next daring challenge. “Steven went to the Wild West...