(TMU) — Robert Irwin, the 16-year-old son of late TV personality Steve Irwin, has recreated the iconic image of his father holding a koala bear, and the internet has responded with an outpouring of adoration as well as shock over the teen’s stunning resemblance to his father.
In a photo shared on Facebook, young Robert appears to be the spitting image of his “Crocodile Hunter” father. In the photo, Robert—dressed in his work uniform for Australia Zoo—can be seen holding a koala bear while resting his head on the animal’s back.
Such a wonderful moment 💚🐨You can meet our gorgeous koalas like Robert on your next #AustraliaZoo adventure! Visit…
Before he passed away in 2006 while filming an ocean documentary, the celebrated Crocodile Hunter was one of Australia’s most famed figures due to his passion for environmentalist and conservationist causes. Since then, Irwin’s widowed wife Terri and her children have continued the family’s multi-generational legacy as “wildlife warriors” fighting for the cause of Australia’s wild animal population.
During the past several months, Australia has been rocked by an unprecedented bushfire crisis that has seen upwards of a billion animals killed in out-of-control blazes, including countless thousands of koalas.
Amid the tragedy, the Irwin family has been working around the clock helping treat a record-breaking influx of animal patients at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital.
In a post last month sharing the original image of Steve, the zoo explained:
“We all have a soft spot for koalas. Steve and Terri opened the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital in 2004 to treat sick, injured and orphaned animals. Since then we have treated over 90,000 animals, including an average of 800 koalas per year. Thanks to your generous support, we are able to continue Steve’s dream giving wildlife a second chance at life.”
We all have a soft spot for koalas. Steve and Terri opened the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital in 2004 to treat sick,…
Last month, Robert gave an emotional interview where he discussed the horrifying toll of the bushfires on the country’s unique wildlife. Speaking to morning news program Sunrise, he explained:
“It’s definitely an ongoing issue and we’re just trying to do our best to help in any way we can.
But it’s a pretty tough situation. We’re absolutely heartbroken.”
Continuing, Robert detailed the various ways in which animals have been harmed by the fires. He said:
“We’re seeing all kinds of different injuries.
Obviously smoke inhalation and burns are happening frequently, but also animals are going into areas where they’re not supposed to be to escape the horrific conditions.
This means they’re getting hit by cars and are being attacked by domestic animals, so there’s a horrific knock-on effect.”
The Irwin family has officially treated well over 90,000 animal patients since the crisis broke out in September, according to Robert’s 21-year-old sister Bindi Sue Irwin. The animals include birds, koalas, possums, platypus, and other rare creatures unique to the Australian continent.
The valiant efforts of the Irwin family have gained the Australia Zoo widespread fame and respect across the world. On Tuesday, Bindi shared video of her late father along with a message announcing that the zoo now has over one million followers on Instagram.