The Crocodile Hunter was one of those amazingly fun programs we all watched as kids. While the animals featured were fascinating all on their own - being super dangerous and all - what really made it special were the antics of Steve Irwin, the Croc Hunter himself. Putting himself casually into situations that would scare the pants off most people, he'd treat the world's most dangerous animals like friends he'd met at the bar, all while teaching us about their lives with a glint in his eye and a cheeky grin.
An incredibly successful show spanning eight seasons, The Crocodile Hunter was tragically cut short when Steve Irwin was killed while filming an upcoming documentary, Ocean's Deadliest, with a stingray, leaving behind his family, comprised of his wife Terri, their son Robert, and their daughter Bindi.
Recovering from such a tragic loss is never easy, so it's amazing to hear that their daughter Bindi has not only grown quite a bit, but has also begun actively pursuing a career as a zoologist. Crikey, Steve would be proud!
Bindi is now 16 years old and on her way to following in her father's footsteps
Taking after her father in both looks and aspirations, she's already made her place in the animal kingdom, expressing a strong desire to work full time at Australia Zoo after finishing her final year of Business and Tourism school.
In an interview with eOnline, she spoke up about the effect her father had on her:
"He was the greatest dad on the planet. He was our inspiration, who we looked up to the most and, for us, we wanna carry on his legacy. We wanna make sure that his message of wildlife and conservation continues, because he was the world's greatest conservationist and so we never want that message to die."
“When [Irwin] was working with venomous snakes or cheetahs, he just treated them in a [certain] way. It was never trying to overpower them or anything like that. He was just loving them. And he was teaching other people about how beautiful they are. Telling people how to respect snakes and respect crocodiles and to love them. And I think if you go about it with that kind of attitude, it’s brilliant.”
She was in contact with dangerous animals from the very beginning
From an early age, Bindi was involved in the Crocodile Hunter lifestyle, interacting with dangerous animals on the regular. She said:
“I have spent my entire life living in a zoo, which is pretty crazy. Not many kids get to say that.”
Check out a clip of Steve Irwin in action below, teaching Bindi the ways of the crocs:
She even starred in a wildlife documentary, Bindi the Jungle Girl
Now at 16-years-old, she has a vibrant Instagram account where she posts shots of her loving the animals, just as her father taught her.
“I do remember he gave me a piece of advice that has stuck with me forever. He said, ‘You have to treat animals the way you wish to be treated.’ Which is so true.”
It's heartwarming to see that Bindi has grown into such a charming and ambitious young woman; and the fact that she shares her father's passion and respect for creatures great and small, no matter how dangerous, is truly inspirational. Good for you, Bindi!