Halfwit History

44 - Crocodile Hero

May 11, 2020 Jonathan & Kiley Season 1 Episode 44
Halfwit History
44 - Crocodile Hero
Halfwit History
44 - Crocodile Hero
May 11, 2020 Season 1 Episode 44
Jonathan & Kiley

This week Jonathan takes the reigns and makes a much needed return trip Down Under, this time sans bad accent, and with more animals. Which is obviously the superior combo in every way.

Topic: The Crocodile Hunter

Music: "Another Day" by The Fisherman.

You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and visit our website at www.halfwit-history.com!

Reach out, say hello, or suggest a topic at HalfwitPod@gmail.com  

Show Notes Transcript

This week Jonathan takes the reigns and makes a much needed return trip Down Under, this time sans bad accent, and with more animals. Which is obviously the superior combo in every way.

Topic: The Crocodile Hunter

Music: "Another Day" by The Fisherman.

You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and visit our website at www.halfwit-history.com!

Reach out, say hello, or suggest a topic at HalfwitPod@gmail.com  

Support the show (https://www.ko-fi.com/halfwithistory)

spk_0:   0:31
hi and welcome map with history. I'm Jonathan

spk_1:   0:33
and I'm Kylie.

spk_0:   0:34
And this is a show where we talk about the upcoming week, but a long time ago

spk_1:   0:37
and sometimes not so long ago. Yeah.

spk_0:   0:40
Do you have any updates, Kylie?

spk_1:   0:43

spk_0:   0:44
Okay, so we're continuing with our trying to catch up to present day. So just me this episode, um, with these air for the week of March 30th April 5th. And my topic is on April 5th in 1997 Steve Irwin's The Crocodile Hunter debuts

spk_1:   1:01
New I love Steve Irwin.

spk_0:   1:04
I know I love watching the Crocodile Hunter. Like when I was little like my TV watching experience was almost exclusively Crocodile Hunter going wild with Jeff Corwin ends Obama food.

spk_1:   1:16
That explains so much so large. Also

spk_0:   1:20
Pokemon in Digimon because, like animals well, TV VHS that I had a dual VHS player for in two VHS is off so I could rewind one while watching the other.

spk_1:   1:33
You're such a weirdo. Yeah.

spk_0:   1:37
So I think I would also credit the Crocodile Hunter for influencing me and taking like my first job that I ever had, Which if I haven't mentioned on here before, which I think I may have is I worked at an exotic animal rescue facility, you know. Ah, thank you to Crocodile Hunter for

spk_1:   1:54
that. We visited recently. And there are some big old crocodiles and their got to feed them, Which was

spk_0:   2:04
what we fed the alligators. Crocodiles? They're too dangerous to feed.

spk_1:   2:08
Oh, yes. Yeah, we said the alligators and I was just equally as scared as I would have been of a crocodile. So what was fine,

spk_0:   2:15
though? The alligators air super lazy compared to crocodiles.

spk_1:   2:18
God, we watched some clean a cage to of Was it one of the crocodiles? That was like, I mean, one that they were like, All right, You need to like to. The other guy was like, All right, you need to come help me clean his cage.

spk_0:   2:32
Yep. The crocodiles are rambunctious.

spk_1:   2:36
And then Steve Irwin would just hug them, so no, you aggressive hug some hard core hugging, distancing. All right. Are you gonna devolve into your Aussie accent?

spk_0:   2:53
I hope not. I will spare them this. If you want to hear that, go over to our other podcast. Half wits and failed Critz, where I am a dungeon master who has to play many n PCs and apparently all of my voice is always devolved to Australia.

spk_1:   3:09
They dio It's not great.

spk_0:   3:13
So the Crocodile Hunter was hosted by the wildly eccentric and unabashedly stereotyped Australian entertainer Steve Irwin and his wife, Terry, as they set out to rescue more than just crocodiles from bad environments and show plenty of other wildlife in their natural habitats. Funny enough, the show is called Crocodile Hunter and hosted by an out there Ozzie. But the first episode wasn't even focused on crocodiles.

spk_1:   3:38
Wait a second. I didn't know that.

spk_0:   3:41
It also wasn't really focused on Australia, either.

spk_1:   3:44
I do feel like I remember that it was just more like fun animals wherever they could find them.

spk_0:   3:51
Yeah, so the first episode actually shows Stephen Terry back in her home state of Oregon, where she had to relocate a cougar. And then they observe some beavers, and then they headed over to New York to watch

spk_1:   4:05
some records. Raccoons made it on Crocodile Hunter. First episode. Okay, all right.

spk_0:   4:12
It was all about natural wildlife, and for some reason, they decided to open in the United States and in City

spk_1:   4:19
Cougar. Cool beavers air. Interesting. The raccoon is something else. I

spk_0:   4:26
mean, the cougar did fit with, like, the show's theme, though, because it was supposed to be, like, rescue. And, like, how do conservation like it was?

spk_1:   4:33

spk_0:   4:34
is a very big focus on conservation which will get into later. But yeah, watching records and beavers was definitely an interesting start.

spk_1:   4:41
Uh, Okay, well,

spk_0:   4:44
so they did end up having, like, a segment on freshwater crocodiles and Ah, great kangaroo. So did pull the theme back together by the end of the episode, you know, don't want to lose the plot on your first episode ever.

spk_1:   4:56
We got Zapeta King grew. Oh my gosh, It was so soft.

spk_0:   5:00
I was a red kangaroo.

spk_1:   5:01
Yeah, it was so cute. Oh, adorable. I

spk_0:   5:06
was surprised at how soft they were because when I used to work there, we didn't have kangaroos. We just had Wallabies and we'll be there just kind of

spk_1:   5:12
there Coarser, right? Yeah. Kangaroos, Super soft like think like a really, really fiction Chila, for almost like it was really, really dense, but really soft. I want to be a king group. Okay? I want to kick people really meanly Yeah,

spk_0:   5:33
there we go. That's the rial reasoning. That's where it really came from. So, interestingly enough, the only three out of eight episodes in the first season actually predominantly featured crocodiles at all, huh? Yep. And I don't think the Siris was ever really intended to just be about the titular reptile B. But like, I don't know, it's just funny that they immediately kicked it off with Crocodile Hunter and then didn't really do too much with crocodiles.

spk_1:   6:01
Yeah, you know, like thinking about it. I definitely don't remember like seeing a ton of crocodiles on that show. And, like, I washed that show a lot.

spk_0:   6:14
So likely the show got its title and theme, predominantly from a special that actually aired a year before the release of Crocodile Hunter. And the special showed two hours of Stephen Terry going through the Outback on a boat in camping along the river on this boat for three months while they tried to track down a 15 foot crocodile that hasn't reported to be an issue in the area. Their goal was to find capture and relocated to a place where it wouldn't cause any trouble, and during their times, they had encounters with the monitor lizards, both one looking to steal some eggs and one where they got to watch the little monitors hatch from some

spk_1:   6:49
eggs. Stephen

spk_0:   6:51
Terry both provide, like, quick fax and commentary as they observe the wildlife, since they're both experienced educators, since they're both experienced educators from what was then the bureau Queensland Reptile and Fauna Park, which was owned and operated by Steve's

spk_1:   7:06
parents. Oh, all right, little bit nepotism up in there. Yes, that's how

spk_0:   7:13
the world goes.

spk_1:   7:14

spk_0:   7:15
so eventually they caught up to the behemoth Crock. But they were too late. They found it dead on a river bank with a bullet wound. From then on, their goal was to get a Zeman e of the large predators relocated from this river to safer homes, and they spent time explaining how toe like track crocodiles and how the crocodiles move during tides. And this often involves Steve getting waist deep in mud, trying to show how like the size and shape of the animal can be told by the markings in the mud that they're trying to find other crocodiles that could have been traveling with this one.

spk_1:   7:48
Interesting. Yeah,

spk_0:   7:49
So it it was really interesting because when I was like rewatching little snippets of it like the tone of the show changed drastically when they saw that the crocodile was killed. Yeah, we're gonna go save the school 15 foot cropping.

spk_1:   8:02
And then they got there and they're like,

spk_0:   8:03
Yeah, they were very upset that somebody decided to take it out.

spk_1:   8:08

spk_0:   8:09
not wait for people toe relocate it.

spk_1:   8:11

spk_0:   8:12
So they put a lot of effort into that. And that whole thing that they were doing there and they were filming would be become the pilot episode for the Crocodile Hunter show on. And they also did some brief scenes back at the wildlife park showing how, like if they can't find a new home for these animals, they take care of them at the park. Eso That kind of also laid groundwork for how the the whole show would be set up because they do that a lot in the show to is they go back to the barrel, cleans Lind Reptile and Final Park, and they show off what they have there. And then they go back into, like, the actual rescuing scenes. And did I mention that this multi month excursion that they filmed and turned into the pilot was Stephen Terry's honeymoon. It was their honeymoon back in 1992 that they had filmed just probably his promotional material or like educational material for the park, and they ended up turning that into a

spk_1:   9:15
TV show. Wow. I mean, I will. I will admit, straight up our honeymoon will not be that exciting. I mean, they really

spk_0:   9:23
tested till death do us part, like right

spk_1:   9:24
away? Yeah, yeah. So

spk_0:   9:29
after letting that pilot episode make the rounds from country to country for about a year, they decided to release it on the date that I picked April 5th, 1997 where it quickly gained momentum as one of the most educational and entertaining shows on the Discovery Channel, reaching over 500 million people in 130 different countries.

spk_1:   9:47

spk_0:   9:47
Yeah, The wild success spawned 64 episodes, 13 specials and a few spin off shows until about 2007.

spk_1:   9:55
Yeah, cool.

spk_0:   9:57
The only Discovery Channel show to run longer than Crocodile Hunter is Mythbusters, the longest running show on Discovery Channel.

spk_1:   10:06
That's cool.

spk_0:   10:06
Yeah, So the show is produced by literally everyone who is a part of the team. Irwin really wanted every person that came with them to have a camera, and eventually they had a team of 73 people who would come with them for filming. Wow! And only five of those people were dedicated film crew, but everyone had a camera so that they could all film whatever they wanted to film, and they would do whatever they wanted with the filming for the show.

spk_1:   10:32
Yeah, I mean, well, that that definitely leaves it like so you can get more interesting perspectives because, like maybe the major film people are like focused on whatever Steve's doing, but maybe someone else with the cameras catching like some other interesting thing. That leg is actually really cool, but just isn't what Steve was doing.

spk_0:   10:53
Um, Steve actually also kept camera on himself and carried it as well so that they could get, like, really interesting, like close shots if it was safe enough to do it. So to get, like the viewer, like, really into like what they were doing. And Steve also really wanted to have the their perspective as they were doing the rescuing so that some of the clips could be like You felt like you were there rather than just like Oh, like this is This is the Steve Irwin show. It's,

spk_1:   11:20

spk_0:   11:21
know, this is like you experiencing stuff that you normally wouldn't be able to.

spk_1:   11:25
Yeah, I definitely feel like I remember, like some shots that, like Onley, could have been from like a body like essentially like a body cam kind of thing.

spk_0:   11:35
So one of the other reasons why he kept a camera on him and this was a big part of, like the flavor of the show as well is he would regularly turn the camera on himself and just like, talk to the camera. And he said that the reason he did this was not like, Oh, just got to get my face on camera more. But he really wanted to talk to the viewer. And he had said in like an interview at one point that whenever he talks at a camera, he's not talking to some obscure audience. He's talking to you. The person looked watching and he wants you to know what's going on so like that's also why he wouldn't like Delvin toe like really complicated talk or anything. It was all very ground level so that everyone could understand.

spk_1:   12:18

spk_0:   12:18
and that was, like, kind of a personal touch that he liked toe add to it.

spk_1:   12:22
That's nice.

spk_0:   12:23
Yeah, So one interview that Irwin did, he was asked about what made his show so successful, and he responded with, Well, it's nothing to do with my looks, that's for sure. And ah, yeah, he'd normally reckon that it's because there's a big crock in the foreground whenever there filming. And then he he responded a little more seriously afterwards, saying, um, but you know what I reckon it is? My belief is that what comes across on the television is the capturing of my enthusiasm and my passion for wildlife. And since I was a boy, I was out rescuing crocodiles and snakes, and my mom and dad were very passionate about that, and I was lucky enough to be able to go along, and I had caught my first crocodile ever at nine years of age, and it was it was a rescue, and I want to bring people along with that, so kind of going back to what I said before. So like, he really believed that the thing that made his show popular was that he was excited about it, and he wanted you to be excited about

spk_1:   13:19
it. I I definitely would agree with that because like, he just had That's like energy. That was very infectious. That, like, even if like what ever creature they were rescuing wasn't like you're most interested creature. He found a way to make it really entertaining.

spk_0:   13:37
Oh, yeah. And he he always made it so that, like, whatever he was talking about, he was interested in. He enthused in it like he probably knew everything that they were talking about. Like an ant areas. Well, like they probably knew all these facts for ages. They probably recited them tons, you know, working at the, um, the reptile and fauna parklike. But it didn't feel like, Oh, I've said this fact to someone 20,000 times. It always felt like, Oh, this is the first time I'm getting to tell someone about this really cool thing about an animal that I know.

spk_1:   14:08
Yeah, like me. Bring up Sutton Foster all the time.

spk_0:   14:13
That's an inside joke of inside

spk_1:   14:15
Jason. Sorry,

spk_0:   14:16
Listeners so we're not the only people. And Steve wasn't the only person that believed that his enthusiasm was what really drove the show. Um, but a renowned animal and nature documentary star, Sir David at Umbro, also praised him, saying that Steve taught people how wonderful in exciting it was, and he was a born communicator. So that's pretty high praise from one of the only other really big people in that field.

spk_1:   14:41
Yeah, very much so.

spk_0:   14:44
So according to Steve, this enthusiasm didn't actually earn him any friends, either. Oh ah, A lot of Australians viewed him as sort of a caricature of Australian stereotypes.

spk_1:   14:54
I get that.

spk_0:   14:57
But Stephen always insists that that's not only who he was but made People who otherwise wouldn't think of conservation really invested in the show because of his antics. And if they're invested because of his antics, they're paying more attention to what is actually on the screen, which is the important stuff, the important stuff about being him being, ah, Australian goofball. But when he you know, sits down and is serious and talking to you about something, you pay attention because you were just so dragged in, Teoh out there he was.

spk_1:   15:25
Yeah, And like I definitely remember like him being ableto pull your focus not just from like him being like, wild and crazy or whatever, but like like, if he had something really important to tell you and it needed to be serious, like that was also very engaging.

spk_0:   15:43
Yeah, and I really think that comes from just how ah genuine he was as because, like, the serious moments were immediately serious. And like, I mean, like the pilot episode where, like, they found the crock dead, like they were laughing and joking on the boat, like, literally minutes before then. And then they were like, Well, this is what we came to Dio and someone screwed that up for us. And now we need to immediately stop joking around and try and save others before they get killed.

spk_1:   16:12
Yeah, no.

spk_0:   16:14
So conservation, as if you can't already tell, was very big for Steve and his biggest hero. Besides his dad, he would say, was the marine explorer and conservationist Jacques Cousteau. So he was quoted as saying, I've always seen jackets. So is a hero. He's a legend. And what he did for conservation's in the sixth for conservation in the sixties through seventies was just phenomenal. And he wants to be just like him. I wanna have a milestone, you know, and create a history so that we've gone beyond the media that we're working with now. And we're taking that media and we're taking Croc Hunter's message and we're taking this into conversation and conservation and greening our planet's into like kids, toys and shirts in our shirts will be advertisements for conservation, and it's like we're taking it to the end degree. In fact, we probably won't stop there either. If there's another medium that we can just get people excited about conservation and we're going to take it and we're going to run with it. So, like he wasn't like, Oh, I'm just gonna try and, like, put all these shirts out for the sake of making money like Crocodile Hunter was never about money for him. It was how many different ways can we reach people so that they care about what's on our

spk_1:   17:23
planet? Yeah,

spk_0:   17:25
So what was Irwin's plan for conservation essentially early wanted to take endangered animal populations out of the wild and put them into zoo's. There that they would be protected from wholesale slaughter or slow death that goes along with habitat destruction, while research researchers could learn everything that they could and set up habitats for them and learn how to safely breathe them while keeping them. Um, still mostly in their own environment. Yeah. Yep. So once, like different areas of habitat destruction or deforestation or other threats to their survival diminished, they could be reintroduced to the into the wild, and the species could be rebuilt. That's what he viewed that zoos were four. And that's mainly how they ran. Um, there, Ah, park is not that Oh, this is for people to see, like obviously, he's very big into people seeing animals, making them like them, making them care about them,

spk_1:   18:18

spk_0:   18:19
But his thing was, he wanted to try and keep the animals as natural to their behaviors as they possibly could, and as someone who is always out there viewing their natural behaviour behaviors in their natural environments, he was trying to replicate that as best he could. So that way, when if he had something endangered in his park that their environment was good again, he wouldn't have to do much to take those animals and put them back in the wild,

spk_1:   18:45
right? A proposed to the current sand bass, the Tiger King would like the petting parks and that kind of thing. Animals that have been raised like that can't survive in the wild because they don't have blank all the like stimulation and essentially, like knowledge and stuff that goes along with having been raised without human contact. So the fact that, like Irwin's like main goal was to keep that feel of in their natural habitat is really big

spk_0:   19:18
eso. I mean, he wasn't immune to the whole petting thing, either, because he he was very much a proponent of. If people care about the animal, they'll want to doom. Or so, like they did have designated animals that were there for bringing out onto show floors like they had stadiums for showing things. Often they did do like petting of animals, but like they didn't breed animals to be pet, which like the big problem with right, the Tiger King and like all of all of like the American zoos where they're breeding animals for being pet and they're useless after that to the new like, if they happen to have animals that maybe they know already can't go back into the wild due to injuries. Those air the animals that to be like, Well, they're gonna live it Arzu forever. They might as well part of the solution of helping people stay interested.

spk_1:   20:07
Yeah. Yep. I mean, like, when we went to the local one of the local zoos around here with the, um you could do there were a couple of options for, like, behind the scenes, almost and all of like you. You paid an extra fee to get a closer interaction with this animal and like you couldn't like, hold it and, like, pick it up or anything. But if it came over to you and wanted attention, that was fine. Um, so it's not like you were like sitting there like petting it and like restraining it and stuff. It was like you were interacting with it in its own environment. And all of the all of the extra fee that you pay goes back to helping save those animals and helping

spk_0:   20:51
maintain that environment,

spk_1:   20:52

spk_0:   20:53
Yeah. And like something else that they do there, is they If that's what they try and do is keep a few animals that air like, interesting and everything. And like they, a lot of those animals are actually like abandoned babies. So, like the people get them and they raise them there at that disease, that's kind of the only thing that they've ever known because they were abandoned like that. But a lot of the times, if they start getting too many animals, what they What they do is they take end or if the animal isn't really suited for zoo environment, is they do ship them off to sanctuaries. So, like there's, I know there's a ring tailed lemur section sanctuary in Texas.

spk_1:   21:34
Oh, that's cool. I don't know that.

spk_0:   21:36
Yeah, they get They get a lot of ring tailed lemurs that people try and keep his pets so they you know you can't have that many of them all together

spk_1:   21:43
before their

spk_0:   21:44
issues. So they, you know, raise a few. There's there's two that have been there for a long time because they got injured when they were rescued. Eso they They're just staying at that local zoo forever. Um, but when the other one's grow up, they get sent over to the sanctuary in Texas, which is like thousands of acres and stuff

spk_1:   22:03
I was also thinking about like our Red Panda encounter. Yeah, that was that was the best going

spk_0:   22:11
like I know there's a lot of people who don't like zoos, and there's a lot of good reasons to not like Suze. But not all zoos are bad,

spk_1:   22:21
right? There are, Ah, lot of places that genuinely really care about these animals, and the only reason they're there is because they could not survive otherwise.

spk_0:   22:34
Yes, so in a lot of cases, and there's definitely I

spk_1:   22:37
don't really places that don't do that

spk_0:   22:39
Well, I also think that no zoo is immune to We need this animal because it will bring attention.

spk_1:   22:44
Yeah, that's a fair.

spk_0:   22:46
But like there is definitely some that put a lot more effort into. Everything we do is for conservation. Yes, and a lot of those you can tell by going to the um Aquarium in Zoological Association website, the A C A. I think that's what there initials stand for. Um, but the Izzy a certifies use to make sure that they are following recommended breeding programs and that if they if they are breeding like how they're breeding, how much interaction? Stuff like. There's a lot of regulation that goes into the

spk_1:   23:18
A zero, I bet. Yeah, I bet.

spk_0:   23:19
And there's actually not many zoos or, um, sanctuaries that are actually easy a certified because it is so rigorous.

spk_1:   23:27
Oh, wow.

spk_0:   23:27
Yeah. So you can see a whole list of it on their website. Cool. But anyways, back to crocodile.

spk_1:   23:33
Oh, yeah, Way had a real topic.

spk_0:   23:36
Oh, I realized that, Ah, earlier I didn't bring it up. Um, I But the Queensland Reptile and Fauna Park that Steve parents created is currently today known as the Australia Zoo.

spk_1:   23:49

spk_0:   23:49
is probably the most famous who in the world, and it is still owned by the Irwins

spk_1:   23:54

spk_0:   23:55
owned and operated.

spk_1:   23:56
That's nice.

spk_0:   23:59
So, Steve show, um helped, you know, give more back to the zoo and tried to make all this money go back to conservation in some way. And one of the ways was that Steve was an act active advocate against poaching of any kind. There was actually a point in time where the governments were discussing and incentivized plan to get villages to help stop poachers by allowing the village to harvest ivory with regulations so like and like be able to do basically like Villagers. If you stop poaching from happening, we'll let you poach once a year on this day kind of a thing with this amount of population to try and like, encourage the decline of poaching by allowing them to do it a little bit. And Steve Irwin, we're

spk_1:   24:48
trying to quit smoking.

spk_0:   24:50
Yeah, it was like trying to wean

spk_1:   24:52
himself off of it, Kind of. I mean, that's

spk_0:   24:54
also the kind of the point of regulations in general is like, You know, we have fishing regulations like you can't over fish this area,

spk_1:   25:00
right, And that's why leg places like Maine and stuff have a lottery for, like moose permits and that kind of thing.

spk_0:   25:06
You don't destroy the popular

spk_1:   25:08
and so that you're not like sitting there paying a bunch of money all the time so that you can go get your mousse and it like it. It makes it a little more fair to that way because it is, it's random. It's randomly generated.

spk_0:   25:19
So Steve Irwin was 100% against this in every way. He was like There is no reason to to coaching be poaching or killing any animal at all. That is not domestic. If it is not a domestic animal, there is no reason we should be doing

spk_1:   25:36
this. I am inclined to agree.

spk_0:   25:39
And that was actually, like, hugely controversial. How much of a hard stand he took against do not interact with animals that are not domestic like. And he was like, You know, we've We've already screwed up animals by making them domestic. Let's keep the ones that we have domestic domestic. Um, he actually was talking at one point about someone had asked him about being vegetarian, and he was like, Oh, are you know, are you vegetarian? And he said, Absolutely not. And I was like, Why? You're like, so hard against like, killing any animals? And his reasoning was, Well, if I have my cows on my farm, those cows can eat plants and interact with chickens and pigs and other animals, and they can all share this area that I own. And then those cows can eventually be butchered and I eat them and then, you know, they produce milk and all that stuff and all of that can happen on essentially a small ecosystem, right? Whereas he he was saying, If your vegetarian you have to dedicate 10 times as much land to Onley plants and no other ecosystem can be there. So the only thing you're helping is insects.

spk_1:   26:49
And arguably, you're trying to actually find a way to keep animals out of your garden. Yeah, which disturbs their natural habitat as well.

spk_0:   26:58
And it's your taking up a lot more land. And you're saying that this land can't be used for anything and it takes a lot more land able to feed yourself off.

spk_1:   27:06
I never would have thought of it that way, but that is a really good point.

spk_0:   27:11
It's kind of an interesting point that, like, you know, we should responsibly have farms and, like, he's not. He definitely wouldn't have advocated for, like, these massive cow farm, massive chicken farms and everything you know, small closed ecosystems that could sustain themselves there. What he was going for, which is a very, you know, conservationist point of view,

spk_1:   27:31
right? Yeah, yeah, that's interesting. I never thought about it that way.

spk_0:   27:35
Yeah, and he's like, Why? Why would I section off just acres of land toe one plant because I can't grow too many plants

spk_1:   27:43
in the

spk_0:   27:43
same area. And how much of those plans does it take to feed me and my family

spk_1:   27:48
sufficient? Wow. Yep, yep. All right. Well, mind blown over here.

spk_0:   27:56
So another thing that they put their money into from Crocodile Hunter and from you know, there's you obviously is. They regularly are purchasing land for conservation as well. In 1994 the Australia Zoo purchased 3500 acres in black but Queensland, known as the Iron Barks Station, and it is extended more than 1000 630 acres since then for the purpose of conservation. Wow! The property was purchased to restore a dwindling Qala habitat, increased Qala numbers. And immediately Stephen Terry planted 48,000 eucalyptus trees in this area to begin the healing process for the qualities that used to call that home. But it was being destroyed.

spk_1:   28:38
Oh, my heart! Oh, the little cool. Wallace Ho

spk_0:   28:44
in Saint George, Australia, the zoo and the Australia Zoo wildlife warriors have purchased over 100 and 17,000 acres in one of the rarest habitats types in Australia. The property is home to array of unique wildlife, including endangered Queensland sub species of a warm a python and the a little known Jaca skink. The location is also the westernmost habitat for the vulnerable yet iconic Wallace. So again, picking conservation spots to help qualities thrive.

spk_1:   29:16

spk_0:   29:17
Steve established this property when he had a hunch that there would be one of pythons in the area. And apparently he was right.

spk_1:   29:24

spk_0:   29:24
like this is the spot where this endangered python could be living and is getting destroyed. Let's just buy it.

spk_1:   29:30
And he happened to find them there, which is really impressive. Oh, my gosh, I just looked up Ayaka skink and it's a door Really cute. Oh, my gosh, It's so cute. What was the other sake? What was a six day

spk_0:   29:44
the wam? A python W O m A.

spk_1:   29:48
Yeah, I'm concerned by the fact that when I went to Google wam a python, the first hit was not in fact, the warm a python, but the wam a python for sale. Oh no! Yeah, that's not good. That's not great. Oh, that's adorable too. Uh thanks are cute. I like rough type spiders reptiles are great, except spiders or not great are active there awful.

spk_0:   30:19
If anyone here listening likes reptiles, look up the crocodile skink. I think it is my favorite record, their So they look like little dragons.

spk_1:   30:29
Gosh, anyway, back to the cracks.

spk_0:   30:32
So, sadly, as many of you probably know, Steve was killed in an accident with a large stingray in 2006. Well, filming cutaway footage for his daughter been D's upcoming show on Discovery Kids. But that didn't stop the Crocodile 100 legacy and their passion for conservation in the slightest. The Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve is 330,000 acres, made up of a vast mosaic of rainforest wetlands in Savannah's. The reserve was set aside as a tribute to Steve in 2008 just days after being the being named the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve. Plans were announced to start mining in the area, and, um, and Terry Erwin ended up having lots of legal battles and eventually got the mining operation completely postponed. And the Steve Irwin Wildlife's Reserve is now known as a strategic environmental area, which means it has more protection than the Great Barrier Reef. Wow. Yep, so lots of conservation effort goes in Wow. Through that zoo.

spk_1:   31:37
Yeah, I re I remember when Steve Irwin died. Oh, yeah. When? 2000 7

spk_0:   31:43
1006. Yeah.

spk_1:   31:44
How so? I would have been What, like math is hard. 14?

spk_0:   31:49
Yes, somewhere around there.

spk_1:   31:50
So around there, I I remember that, like, vividly like that. I don't know why, but for some reason, that was something that, like I remembered and like, I kept some, like retention of, um, and it It's something that, like, I think was like, really surprising to everyone. Because, generally speaking, stingrays aren't naturally like they're super aggressive.

spk_0:   32:19
Yeah, I mean, this this one just got spooked by them, and they're they're big,

spk_1:   32:23
they're bit Oh, I got I've held a sting ray like a full grown sting Ray. It was like in Luckily for me, it was on a cruise on a snorkeling trip. So these sting rays have had a lot of interaction with people. And like the people who run like that, the snorkeling, snorkelling, Tory's and stuff have, like, a little like relationship with them in that, like they give them, like treats and stuff and what not end like in return. The singer's comes from around with the people, but like I got to, like, essentially hold the stingray. And like I'm first off, I had, like, de inflated my little life preserver that, like you blow up because I wanted to be old to, like, swim down and actually see stuff some over there trying to tread water while holding the stingray that my I could see my mother on the boat freaking out because I'm holding a stingray. And it was like maybe two years later, like Steve Irwin

spk_0:   33:20
was kind of fresh in people's minds that, oh, these things have giant poisonous barb. You can go right through your chest cavity.

spk_1:   33:27
Yep, and so I'm like, I'm like, over there, like trying to tread water and trying to keep this giant stingray happy because, like, I mean, this thing was big, like it was like practically my wingspan, and I'm just like like rubbing the underside of its flappy flappy thing is, it's flappy, flappy safety floppies and like because, like they're so soft, like they're insanely songs. And I'm just like over there trying to tread water and trying to keep this stingray happy and I can see my mother freaking out on the boat and I'm just like I'm gonna be in so much trouble later. It was great that was totally worth it.

spk_0:   34:07
So currently all of these reserves are still constantly host to else types of conservation research. So it's not. It's not it. Just like no one can use this land. It's they. There are constant people applying for grants through the Australia Zoo to go out into that land and research like different birds different. A different lizards. Yeah, and sex different. Even plants like there's a lot of plant researchers. I go out there because the area is untouched, like you on Lee can go out there if you have a grant.

spk_1:   34:35
Yeah, I I think I like, remember seeing something along those lines because I know the Harvard Medical School does a like wilderness like, um, like fellowship. Essentially. So doctors will study leg, not wilderness medicine like that's not there like the right turn before, but like how to care for people in environments that have severely decreased resource is, and the kind of things like the article that I was reading was in relation to the Cove. It outbreak. And one of the fellows was in the Himalayas and ended up like coming back because he realized that he was more needed here than he was in this very remote region where they probably weren't going to have anyone coming through because they mostly dealt with people climbing on Everest and like treating that so he was like, I need to go back like this is the weirdest thing because I am were needed there that I am in this, like, severely remote.

spk_0:   35:38
I'm an emergency field doctor and for some reason, I'm needed in cities. Good,

spk_1:   35:41
yeah, yeah, exactly. Um, so, like, that's it's it's really interesting, like how many different fields can benefit from like, that kind of thing, like so, so much research and, like knowledge can be gained.

spk_0:   35:56
Yeah, and like the amount of effort that the that the Irwins in the Australians who is putting into making sure that like these areas are not touched

spk_1:   36:04
Yeah, really incredible. Yeah, that's that's really impressive.

spk_0:   36:07
And a lot of that's because of the success of Crocodile under.

spk_1:   36:10
Yeah, I mean, plans were like their heart was in the right place. Yeah, in doing that.

spk_0:   36:17
So that's about all that I have on the topic. So I want to end with one funny thing that I found that Steve Irwin had said that I hadn't heard before, which is about an animal, that he actually scared him.

spk_1:   36:28
Oh, all right.

spk_0:   36:30
The fearless Steve Irwin was scared, terrified of an animal.

spk_1:   36:35
It's gonna be like a chicken. He or something like

spk_0:   36:38
that. This is the quote, the only animals I'm not comfortable with our parrots learning as I go, I get better with them. I really am. But for some reason, parents half to bite me. That's their job. And I don't know why that is. I've nearly had my nose torn off.

spk_1:   36:56
Oh, no. You need to tell your parents story now.

spk_0:   37:00
Okay, So my parents story and I completely agree with how horrible

spk_1:   37:06
like over here dying Because all I could envision was you. What Walls that quote was after. I

spk_0:   37:13
almost feel like we've talked about this parent story at some point on the podcast.

spk_1:   37:17
I don't think we have. I feel

spk_0:   37:19
like maybe you got maybe brought up, but maybe not the whole story. Well, but anyways,

spk_1:   37:23
if you've heard this before Skip ahead, like three minutes. It

spk_0:   37:27
won't be that long. So I was working a at the place that we were talking about earlier, and we would go out and do shows. And one of the places that we stayed at was like a mini golf and food place. And we would have, like, apartment set up there in the in the summer. And there is a big tent that you know would let people in. And I, you know, we'd switch off being like the ticket person and normally when we were the ticket person, When you take something out of one of the cages and have it with us on the ticket booth while we were giving out tickets as long as it was, you know, something easy to control.

spk_1:   38:00
Yeah, like That's definitely a dry like, especially kids. They're going to see, like, ah, cool animal and be like, Let's do that. There's a cool

spk_0:   38:07
animal I want to go in. How

spk_1:   38:08
much is it for the parents? I'm like, Oh, great. This is gonna keep my child entertained for the next 30 minutes. Perfect.

spk_0:   38:15
Um, so I was taking care of our scarlet macaw as that was happening cause we took her out for a show when I was going to go put her back in. And then we had, like, a huge influx of people buying tickets. And there were some people cleaning some of the cages. There were, you know, most of the of the other employees were trying to get the animals back into their enclosures between shows. And I just like, you know what? I have a pretty good reputation with this bird. I'll bring it over, it'll, you know, rest on my arm and I'll

spk_1:   38:44
be fine.

spk_0:   38:45
He'll be fine, like I can. I can put her down on the booth. If I really need Teoh and she'll stay there, she won't fly. Shouldn't have flight feathers. It was, um I'm doing tickets, doing tickets, doing tickets, and she wanted to stay on my arm. She didn't want to get onto the pedestal. So I was doing to his doing tickets, and I didn't notice because I was paying too much attention. Everything else, which is bad mistake on my part. There's not not acceptable. Don't do it. Um, in case you didn't know if birds get above your eyesight they think they're dominant to you and their personality changes in an instant. It is dangerous to let birds on your shoulder. I know that. That's always in media. Don't do it. It's not smart. Yeah, and as soon as this burns that

spk_1:   39:28
especially a big bird like a macaw, Right? But even little birds,

spk_0:   39:32
right? Like if they get upon where your head is, they start thinking that their dominant Yeah. So I had this big scarlet macaw, somehow very gently scoot up onto my shoulder. And as I'm giving out tickets, I hear someone gasp. And I feel a little prick like right around my Adam's apple and this bird, whenever she would do something bad, she would cackle before she did the bad thing.

spk_1:   39:58
Kind of like me. You Ah,

spk_0:   40:00
ah ah! And I froze, realizing that the prick I felt on my Adam's apple was her beak wrapped around my neck, and I was sure that I was about to die in front of all

spk_1:   40:10
of these because

spk_0:   40:11
Macaws bites would be able to rip right through my neck.

spk_1:   40:15
Yanks and

spk_0:   40:17
I put my finger up where a foot is and told her to step up and she just got onto my hand and got down. Terrifying. Don't put birds on your shoulder. Don't do it. It's not smart.

spk_1:   40:28
And now we know why Steve Room was so scared of parents. Yeah, I completely agree. Parents

spk_0:   40:33
are horrifying. They're smart. They're so

spk_1:   40:35
spare. Very smart.

spk_0:   40:37
So, uh, don't mess with parents.

spk_1:   40:39
Remember when I was younger? My aunt had a like one of those, like big green parents. And I remember very little from when she lived, like up the road from us, because it was when I was younger. But I remember that parrot. That's like the only thing that parents are super cool. Don't let them

spk_0:   40:55
on your shoulders Anyways. That's all I have. So let's go into the call to action. You guys can find us on Facebook and Twitter at half wit history. You can send us an email at half. What? Pot at gmail dot com.

spk_1:   41:10
Yes, Um, you should, ah, send us some suggestions or comments or feedback. We would love any of the above. Just say hello. Yeah, just say hello. If there's a specific topic that you'd like us to cover, uh, let us know and we would love to, like, try and accommodate fan like choices, because that would be yes.

spk_0:   41:35
And they also cut down on our research time so you can go to our website at half wit dash history dot com. And you can if you'd like to support us monetarily, you go to K o dash FBI dot com forward slash half with history. That's Cofie dot com forward slash half wit history. Yes, we'd appreciate it. Thank you. To the fishermen for the use of our theme song. Another day you confined their notes down in our no, you can find their soundcloud down in our

spk_1:   42:07
show. Notes Reverse those you can find. Our show does in their soundcloud. Wait, What? There we go. Sorry I lost my fun of actual second to find it again.

spk_0:   42:18
Now we're on to fund

spk_1:   42:19
fax. Hey, you

spk_0:   42:21
wanna go first? Since I've done all the time.

spk_1:   42:23
Yes. All right. So on March 30th 1984 New York police Detective Robert Cunningham offered the his waitress Phyllis pens 0/2 of a dollar lottery ticket as her tip the next day they want $6 million. Oh, my goodness. And they split it. Nice. Yep. so, like, kept his best tip ever. Like. That's insane. And I really wish I had been the waitress. What's the percentage?

spk_0:   42:54
Yeah, I'm getting, um my fun fact is, from April 1st of 1990 it becomes illegal in Salem, Oregon, to be within two feet of new dancers.

spk_1:   43:06
Oh, I definitely thought you said new dance like Children learning to dance? Nope, Definitely not that.

spk_0:   43:14
All right. As always, I've been your half wit,

spk_1:   43:17
and I'm your historian Theo.