Steve Irwin "The Crocodile Hunter": 14 June
Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Irwin in strife over wildlife
Reporter: Kirstin Murray
COLVIN: Is there any such thing as bad publicity?
Where television's crocodile hunter, Steve Irwin,
is concerned, the answer seems to be, "Crikey,
Irwin's last brush with the news media involved his
baby being allegedly at risk from a large croc. This
time it's the wildlife that's alleged to have been
at risk, from Steve Irwin.
intrepid television naturalist is accused of breaking
the rules by getting too close to penguins and whales
Irwin says he did nothing wrong, but he's admitted
to PM this afternoon that he does like the attention.
MURRAY: Steve Irwin's in hot water yet again, but
at a zoo in Queensland today, you could hardly tell.
IRWIN (to crowd): So thank you one and all for coming
to Australia Zoo where crocs rule! Wahoo!
and clapping from crowd)
MURRAY: The showman who's made a name for himself
wrestling crocodiles, says he doesn't know what all
the fuss is about. Steve Irwin and his film crew travelled
to Antarctica in February to film this.
IRWIN: See those teeth!
MURRAY: For the American documentary called Icebreaker.
apparently shows him swimming with whales and sliding
with penguins. But how close did he get to the Antarctic
law says visitors must stay at least five metres from
seals and penguins, and swimming with whales is banned.
public complaints that Steve Irwin breached his permit,
the Federal authorities want to take a closer look.
documentary will be aired later in the week, and although
this sort of publicity probably won't hurt his ratings,
Steve Irwin was this afternoon conducting a series
of media interviews and insisting it's all been a
IRWIN: Oh, total beat up, mate. Like I'm tobogganing
over there, the penguin's over there, what's the big
deal? I mean, I don't know what they're goin' on about
there, I really don't. I don't understand that one
MURRAY: What about
but that is a total storm in a teacup.
MURRAY: What about claims you're touching whales?
IRWIN: That's, that's not true, that's false, that
is absolutely tru
that is just not on. Um, I'm
sitting on an iceberg, bobbin' around out in the middle
of the ocean and the whales, I'm in their environment
mate, and they're goin' around me, and um, as the
international whaling convention's general principal
states, they do what they want and they leave when
this? The whales, I got back on board, because I'm
starting to go into hypothermia because I've got so
much water in my supposed dry suit, I'm startin' to
die, so I get back on the boat, and the whales just
kept comin' round, it's all there, it's on the vision.
MURRAY: How confident are you that you didn't break
the rules? You're facing a $1-million fine and two
MURRAY: Are you worried you might be charged?
IRWIN: Not even slightly mate, no, I'm not even remotely
worried. There was an investigation took place a couple
of weeks ago, um
MURRAY: Who was that investigation by?
IRWIN: Ah, the environmental
police, I don't
know, I'm, I'm not, sorry, I don't know what their
names are, but there was an investigation took place
ah, a couple of weeks ago before I went to America,
and they went to John Stainton and Judi Bailey, of
Best Picture Show Company, and they looked at the
vision that we filmed of the whales down in Antarctica,
and they said everything's okay.
MURRAY: The Department of Environment is concerned.
They've asked for a copy of the tape, so obviously
they haven't seen this clearance.
I don't know mate, I got home from
America yesterday afternoon, I was sittin' at the
boat ramp, I got a call, hey Stevo, you're on the
news again, so I came home. So I really don't know
what's goin' on in Canberra, and I'm not sure if they
MURRAY: Critics might argue that not only is it good
for the cause you're fighting for, but also good for
sales. What would you say to that?
IRWIN: Oh, sales snails, I'm not sure about sales.
I know is um, ah, Greenpeace, World Wildlife Fund,
Steve Irwin, Jacques Cousteau, Sir David Attenborough,
mate, we are the people that are filming the whales,
taking it to you so as you understand the beauty of
the animals. If we can get 'em into your hearts, then
we may be able to stop whaling. But believe me, the
whaling people don't like me.
COLVIN: Steve Irwin speaking to Kirstin Murray.
Radio National: PM
Man Australia - Steve Irwin
Hunter biting employees?
acts, by Stephanie Peatling - 19th June 2004