Australia Zoo & Wildlife Warriors

Almost 17 years have passed since Steve Irwin was killed by a stingray while filming in the Great Barrier Reef, but not a day goes by when his daughter Bindi Irwin doesn’t think of him.

And, as she tells HELLO! during a moving exclusive to mark World Earth Day, she hopes he’s looking down upon her and would be proud of everything their family have achieved in honoring his legacy.

It’s hard to believe it’s been over 16 years since he passed away, the conservationist told us. In some ways, it still feels like yesterday that we were on our last crocodile research trip together as a family. I know in my heart that his love and enthusiasm will live on and that brings me great comfort.

With the same fighting spirit as her dad, Bindi has big dreams to change the world with kindness. We work hard to ensure Dad’s mission continues to grow, just like he wanted us to do.

We work hard to ensure Dad’s mission continues to grow, just like he wanted us to do. He always used to say, I don’t care if people remember me, I want everyone to remember my mission. Through our work both at Australia Zoo and Wildlife Warriors, conservation through exciting education is our ethos.

We support projects around the world protecting wildlife. In Africa we work with three organizations. The Black Mambas, an all female army trained anti poaching team working within the Greater Kruger National Park in South Africa.

Ol Pejeta Conservancy protects the critically endangered black rhinos with specially trained K-9 Units working alongside the rangers.

Cheetah Outreach’s Guarding Dog Program, where Anatolian Shepherd dogs are placed with herds of livestock, to deter predators, in particular saving cheetahs from being shot by farmers.

In Sumatra we have two very important projects with tigers and elephants. We help to employ 60 full-time forest rangers who patrol the jungle and dismantle illegal tiger snare traps. Through Australia Zoo we have built an enormous elephant hospital in Sumatra, to treat and care for elephants in need.

My mum grew up in Oregon, USA, so we support a brilliant wildlife organisation, Wildlife Images which has a hospital treating approximately 1,200 wild animals each year.

Here in Australia we have many projects. We support whale shark research alongside Ecocean, learning about this enormous and secretive species. We fund the largest crocodile research program in the world alongside The University of Queensland, using state-of-the-art acoustic and satellite trackers.

Our Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital and Rescue Unit has treated over 120,000 patients and continues to expand utilising cutting edge medical treatments for the wildlife that comes into our care.

We also have three conservation properties within Australia which adds up to about half a million acres of pristine land, set aside for protection of native species.

We’ve treated over 120,000 animals. Our philosophy is ‘save one, save the species’. The goal with every animal brought into care is to give them the best chance at life in the wild once again. It’s humbling to know that with so many animals treated, we are helping to save entire species.

Personally, I believe we should treat every day like it’s World Earth Day. We only have this one beautiful, green planet and our very survival depends on us caring for it.

World Earth Day is a fantastic reminder to stop and appreciate our wonderful world while giving us all that push to think about our own impact. At Australia Zoo our entire year feels like World Earth Day.

We strive to inspire every one of our guests to love and respect the species we live alongside.

Our team of 400 works incredibly hard to impart the conservation message in an exciting way so people walk away with a sense of purpose and passion to protect the natural world. Our hearts beat for conservation every minute of every day.

We feel lucky to have such a large family of animals. Australia Zoo is like a resort for wildlife and we strive to create remarkable habitats for our animal family. I think the most important aspect of working with wildlife is always keeping the awe in your heart for every species.

If you’ve spent five minutes or five years with an animal, it’s vital to never lose that genuine love, respect and appreciation for them. It is such a privilege to work with wildlife, especially as closely as we all do at Australia Zoo.

They’re part of our family and it’s an honor to share them with our guests to instill a greater understanding for all species.

On the day we had a candle-lighting ceremony in honor of Dad, alongside my favorite photo of him and our family dog, Sui. It meant the world to pay tribute to his memory on our special day.

I’d also like to mention my incredible brother who walked me down the aisle. I’m forever thankful for his friendship and support.

Simple things like swapping out your laundry detergent/dish soap for greener alternatives, turning off the tap while you brush your teeth, composting, recycling, donating used items, planting a garden, shopping local, setting up bird feeders or bee boxes and seeking out companies with environmentally driven products.

The options are endless and every little action adds up to make a big difference. There are many ways to show kindness towards our Mother Earth. We all lead such different lives, it’s important to find what works best for you and your lifestyle.

If everyone does the best they can do to reduce their footprint, the world will be a much brighter place for the generations to come. One of the biggest conservation stands you can take is to never purchase any wildlife products.

When the buying stops, the killing can, too. Check your pet food for wildlife products like kangaroo meat, avoid fashion brands that promote skins or fur and make informed food choices when at the grocery store.

Volunteering your time to an environmental organization is an enormous help and donating funds is incredibly beneficial.

We run the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital and our non profit conservation organization, Wildlife Warriors, and I can tell you first-hand that donations of time and funds are tremendously appreciated.

There are also many small acts of kindness you can show in everyday life to protect the planet. Saying ‘yes’ to reusable items like water bottles and ‘no’ to single-use plastics.

Planting native flowers or trees, organizing local clean-up days at the park or beach, swapping that archaic hunting trip for a meaningful photography adventure, educating and inspiring others to care for our Earth.

Hello / Crickey Coservation Society.

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