START A PETITION 25,136,189 members: the world's largest community for good
START A PETITION
x
Sep 13, 2006

Iain has received 86 new, 844 total stars from Care2 membersIain has been awarded 250 butterflies for taking action at Care2Iain has 2 Golden Notes. Iain C.
Wildlife warrior's quiet generosity
Michael Bodey
September 06, 2006

STEVE Irwin wound up the charitable foundation named after him because he believed his name polarised Australians and would hinder donations.
But the new conservation foundation he established in its place, Wildlife Warriors, has been inundated by donations from as far afield as Croatia after his death.

Irwin contributed to conservation personally by buying property throughout Australia, Vanuatu and the US. The man, who reportedly earned $4 million last year, kept his considerable land holdings very quiet, primarily because many of them were established to rejuvenate flora or fauna. His most public, the 34,000ha he purchased in the central Queensland brigalow belt, hoped to restore python and koala numbers.

The Irwins and their business partners, John Stainton and Judi Bailey, worked hard to play down their lucrative entertainment cashflows. The low prices they received for their documentaries and middling returns from their foray into merchandising betrayed the obvious success of an omnipresent celebrity.

The obvious next step in his empire, the expected success of his investment in the movie The Crocodile Hunter: Collision Course, did not unfold as favourably as expected.

Nevertheless, Irwin's empire churned well enough to sustain the distribution of $2 million a year to charitable programs through Wildlife Warriors and to maintain its operating overheads at Australia Zoo.

Recently, Irwin even investigated buying a Queensland island on which to naturally breed threatened orang utans and Sumatran tigers, before realising it would be easier to build an island at Australia Zoo.

"He would have liked to buy Australia to make that a conservation island," joked WW's executive manager, Michael Hornby.

"Some of the things he said could seem outlandish, but if he had half a chance, he'd do it if it would make a positive difference."

Even close confidants are unsure of Irwin's property holdings, although much of it is said to be bush or scrub useful only for conservation purposes.

Nevertheless, Terri Irwin and children Bindi and Bob won't want for anything, said one confidant, despite the US Discovery Channel establishing the Steve Irwin Crocodile Hunter Fund for wildlife conservation and contributing to the education of his children.

Irwin was as good as his word in farming out his money.

He lived frugally, sustained by a basic existence in which a swag would be more inviting than a hotel room.

The environmentalist and entertainer, dubbed the "Evel Knievel of the natural world" also had a wide reach, contributing time and funds to tiger programs in India and Bhutan, elephant conservation projects in Cambodia and Vietnam and a cheetah-release program in South Africa.

WW also provided support in Banda Aceh after the Boxing Day tsunami, providing veterinary support for the elephants clearing the rubble.

"He didn't bang the drum about it," Mr Hornby said.

"The bottom line for Steve is the outcomes, not who was doing it or how, but how it was impacting upon the environment."


 [ send green star]

 

 
 
Content and comments expressed here are the opinions of Care2 users and not necessarily that of Care2.com or its affiliates.

Author

CR Ranger
, 2
Montara, CA, USA
Shares by Type:
All (177) | Blog (80) | Alert (52) | Tribute (5) | Message (40)

Showing shares tagged with: natural [show all]
SHARES FROM CR'S NETWORK
Feb
18
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\n\\r\\nHello my C2 Family, \\r\\nFirst let me say Thank You to those of you who have so sweetly fwd my posts. You are SO AWESOME!! I will never forget your help. Anytime I can repay the favour, please tell me. Second, my Submit button has disappeared lea...
Feb
15
(0 comments  |  discussions )
New Petition! Speak out against Time-Warner Merger with Comcast! Let your opinion be know before your bill goes up and your programming choices dwindle.\\r\\n\\r\\nUrge DOJ and FCC to Not Allow Merger of Time-Warner and Comcast\\r\\nhttp://www.t hepetitionsi...
Feb
13
(0 comments  |  discussions )
New Petition! Speak out against Time-Warner Merger with Comcast! Let your opinion be know before your bill goes up and your programming choices dwindle.\\r\\n\\r\\nUrge DOJ and FCC to Not Allow Merger of Time-Warner and Comcast\\r\\nhttp://www.t hepetitionsi...
Feb
9
(0 comments  |  discussions )
Jan
29
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\n\\r\\nYear of the wooden horse, signifying unexpected adventure and surprising romance.\\n
Jan
21
by Uno D.
(0 comments  |  discussions )
I love my Macbook, but reently thought I had reason to shop for a new one. In doing some research, I came across this ... which I found interesting.  I had a positive image of Apple ... not anymore ... \\r\\n \\r\\nhttp://impressiveen gineering.com/d...
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\nSave Patagonia (Spanish language)\\n\\n \\n\\n\\n
Jan
16
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\nTell EPA to Ban Large-Scale Mining in the Bristol Bay Watershed!\\n\\n \\n\\n\\n
Jan
14
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\nSave Patagonia\\n\\n \\n\\n\\n
Jan
13