Steve Irwin Day – Australia Zoo 50 Years – 15 Nov 2020.
In 1970 “Beerwah Reptile Park” was established on Queensland Sunshine Coast. Two acre wildlife park was native to Lace Monitors , Tiger Snakes, Freshwater Crocodiles , Magpie Geese and Kangaroos. Many of the Kangaroos were cared for by Steve’s Mum Lyn. Steve used to say that his Mother was Mother Teresa of Wildlife Rehabilitation.
Steve Irwin (22 Feb 1962 – 4 Sep 2006 ) was born into Wildlife.
Steve was a born wildlifer and growing among the Park Wildlife he had incredible Skills. By 1980s the Park had developed into four acres and rebranded as “Queensland Reptile and Fauna Park” . At this stage Steve was leading a Queensland Government program to rescue and relocate 100 Crocodiles some of them in the Park.
Harriet – It was during this time that the park became home to Galapagos Tortoise named Harriet who remained for two decades in the park till she passed away in Jun 2006.
In 1991 Steve took over the Management of the Park and not long after met Terri Raines from Oregon who was visiting the park due to her love for Predatory mammals. They were married 04 Jun 1992 and had two children Bindi Sue (b 24 Jul 1998) and Robert Clarence Irwin (b 01 Dec 2003).
Instead of Honeymoon Steve and Terri filmed a Crocodile rescue mission and it became the First episode of “Crocodile Hunter” documentary series and Steve was nicknamed “The Crocodile Hunter”. The Park’s name was also changed to “Australia Zoo”. They established the Australia Zoo Wildlife hospital and in 2004 dedicated to his mother who passed away in 2000. today it rescues , rehabilitates and release 7000 native Australian Animals every year.
Steve and Terri would go on to film over 300 episodes of Crocodile Hunter, Croc Diaries, Croc Files, New Breed Vets, Ghosts of War and Bindi: The Jungle Girl. These programs have been enjoyed by over 500 million viewers world-wide.
On 04 Sep Steve Irwin died while snorkeling in sea barrier reef due to sting ray injury. But his family continues to keep his dream alive and the Australia Zoo today encompasses 700 acres and employs 500 Staff and continues Steve’s mission of “Conservation Through Exciting Education”
15 Nov every year is celebrated as Steve Irwin Day and Australia Post has released a Postage Paid Envelope on 15 Nov 2020 to mark 50 Years of Australia Zoo and Home of Crocodile hunter Steve Irwin.