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Steve Irwin Dead 1004

mkosmo writes " is reporting that Steve Irwin was killed in a freak accident while filming one of his well known documentaries. Surprisingly it wasn't a crocodile, it was a sting-ray."
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Steve Irwin Dead

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  • oblig (Score:4, Funny)

    by Kell Bengal ( 711123 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:39AM (#16035829)
    • Re:oblig (Score:4, Funny)

      by HillBilly ( 120575 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:40AM (#16035837)
      Did you see that! It got me right in the chest... oh fuc.....
      • oMG ROFL SKATES!! (Score:5, Insightful)

        by tompee ( 967105 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @08:05AM (#16037144)
        Isn't this hilarious! omg... CRIKEY! I'm DEAD... CRIKEY!! GET IT? LOLLOL

        I'm sure I'll be instantly reprimanded, reminded of the place of black humour, and told how much of a wuss I am being. In fact I'm sure there are armies of nerds just waiting to pounce on anyone who is silly enough to object to the clammering for "funny" mod points before the story gets old. Black humour does have it's place, and I did expect there to be a lot here, but when the entire top half of this page is filled with these comments modded "+5 funny", something about it is just a bit disheartening, quite frankly.

        So anyway, I'm not sure who won this round of the perpetual /. competition to be the 'uber nerd', to show that you're too cool to care (especially when people might expect you to care), but I would just like to show some 'weakness' and say that I find this part of todays news to be kind of sad.

        He could be annoying, embarassing, he courted danger (and eventually paid the price)... but he was so exuberant and positive, and niave in a way. No one can accuse him of being fake or caring about himself more than the environment so many of us neglect as matter of mere convenience. Something about his positive outlook and naive manner in contrast with his early death just seems sad to me. Poor bloke
        • by Pneuma ROCKS ( 906002 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @09:07AM (#16037310) Homepage
          Black humour does have it's place, and I did expect there to be a lot here, but when the entire top half of this page is filled with these comments modded "+5 funny", something about it is just a bit disheartening, quite frankly.

          I believe they/we do this because it's so much easier to come up with a joke than a serious comment, even for such a great guy as he apparently was (just read it off wikipedia). Furthermore, I think it's healthy to have a good laugh, even in sad occasions such as this.

    • Re:oblig (Score:5, Funny)

      by moochfish ( 822730 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @06:30AM (#16036921)
      Crocodiles: 0.
      Stingrays: 1.
  • I feel for his kids. These poor kids are going to grow up with a father. All they are going to really know about him is going to be what they see on TV.
  • Thanks Steve (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ( 960072 ) * on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:40AM (#16035836)
    Steve should be commended for his efforts over the years. His enthusiasm was infectious.

    Unfortunately, while he stood as a model environmentalist, he now stands as an example of the dangers of directly interacting with wild animals.

    Jim [] - Exercise for the rest of us.
    • Re:Thanks Steve (Score:4, Insightful)

      by NineNine ( 235196 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:57AM (#16035949)
      "Unfortunately, while he stood as a model environmentalist, he now stands as an example of the dangers of directly interacting with wild animals."

      Why is this unfortunate? I think that this is fortunate in two ways:

      1. Stupid people are less likely to mess with wild animals. That's good for the animals.

      2. People are reminded that no matter what kind of technology we have, nature is going to get ALL of us in the end, and there's a good chance that many of us could be easily wiped out by something as massive as a hurricane or as wild as a stingray (apparently). It teaches people to be both humbled and awed by nature. That's good for people.
    • by Coneasfast ( 690509 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:07AM (#16035997)
      Yep. I have the upmost respect for him, I could never get into that much danger. Luckily computer parts don't have sharp claws. Imagine upgrading your video card: "Isn't she a beauty, a brand new nVidia 78... Crikey! the fucker bit me!"
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Jeff DeMaagd ( 2015 )
      Unfortunately, while he stood as a model environmentalist, he now stands as an example of the dangers of directly interacting with wild animals.

      Wild animals can be dangerous and there's no way around that. In combination with his intended message, his death is probably a good lesson to leave nature alone, and that's one of the best environmental messages one can give.
    • Re:Thanks Steve (Score:5, Insightful)

      by LarsWestergren ( 9033 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:44AM (#16036180) Homepage Journal
      Steve should be commended for his efforts over the years. His enthusiasm was infectious. Unfortunately, while he stood as a model environmentalist, he now stands as an example of the dangers of directly interacting with wild animals.

      I always preferred Sir David Attenborough. That is someone who truly loves and respects nature. Perhaps Steve did too, but watching his show it seemed to be more about him being wild and wacky and less about the animals. They were just there to be annoyed and do "dangerous" things.

      Try wathing Living Planet, Life in the Undergrowth, Blue Planet or something like that. Better footage, better science, better drama...
      • Re:Thanks Steve (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Dasher42 ( 514179 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @03:01AM (#16036252)
        I'm a big fan of Attenborough too, but I think Irwin's show reached a different kind of person, and everybody could stand to have more appreciation of nature. Really, sneaking a nature show into a stunt show is what he did, and it's really sad that the odds caught up with him. Steve Irwin's off-camera work showed he really cared about wildlife, and it's really sad to lose someone like that.

        A stingray barb to the chest - ouch, that's a painful way to go. If I'm right, only one person [] has ever survived that.
        • Re:Thanks Steve (Score:4, Informative)

          by malsdavis ( 542216 ) * on Monday September 04, 2006 @07:59AM (#16037131)
          "Really, sneaking a nature show into a stunt show is what he did, and it's really sad that the odds caught up with him."

          The irony of it all is that he wasn't killed by one of the deadly animals he often encountered. Stingrays are not normally considered dangerous, they are extremely passive and gentle creatures, their sting is purely for self-defense.

          In fact, according to the 298.stmBBC [], he is the first person in Australia to die from a Sting-ray since 1945!

          Truely, this is a tragic freak accident. I just hope all his conservation work (which was REAL conservation work not just for show) can be kept going.
      • by Derling Whirvish ( 636322 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @05:28AM (#16036760) Journal
        I always preferred Sir David Attenborough. That is someone who truly loves and respects nature.

        I agree about Sir David Attenborough greatness, but the difference is how thay handled reptiles. After watching Sir David Attenborough, if I found a snake in the back yard I would still chop off its head with a hoe. After watching Steve Irwin, I would think twice and maybe call someone to take it away. Steve changed the image of reptiles from nasty creatures that you kill on sight to animals that should be respected the same as the furry cute ones.
  • by linguizic ( 806996 ) * on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:42AM (#16035846)
    I always thought he would die of cancer, or heart attack at age 90. Who knew that chasing wild animals to pin them down could be so dangerous?
  • why did it kill him? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ftsf ( 886792 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:42AM (#16035852) Homepage
    from wikipedia:
    Dasyatids do not attack aggressively, or even actively defend themselves. When threatened their primary reaction is to swim away. However, when they are attacked by predators or stepped on, the barbed stinger in their tail is mechanically whipped up, usually into the offending foot; it is also possible, although less likely, to be stung "accidentally" by brushing against the stinger.
    what did he do to cause a stingray to kill him? TFA says it was a freak accident. but was it really? what were the stingray's intentions?
    • by TheDugong ( 701481 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:59AM (#16035960)
      What do you reckon? I would bet serious money on him doing the usual lets annoy a wild animal so I can look cool and have my own TV channels. But guess what, humans cannot move anywhere near as fast as fish underwater. I am a pretty experienced scuba diver and have seen more stingrays than I can remember. I have been slammed by a big (~2M disc diameter) stingray in an aquarium (a mate sneaked some frozen fish into my pocket :) ), it was absolutely hilarious, far from scary. They are simply not agressive. They filter sand for little crustacean and fish fodder. You would have to seriously provoke them for them to do more than just swim away. I wonder if the film footage (there is bound to be some) will ever surface.
    • by Americano ( 920576 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:10AM (#16036012)
      IANASE (... not a stingray expert), but according to this article: []

      Stingrays are generally non-aggressive and intelligent creatures. They have been called the "pussycat of the sea," and devotees of diving programs on educational TV are often treated to images of scuba divers hitching a ride with some of the larger forms. This is a precarious activity at best, however, since the stingray's spine is in a perfect position to inflict injury to a human pressed against their dorsum. And if frightened, roughly handled, or captured, they react quickly by using their tail to place the sting in close contact with the object of their discomfort. Stingrays cannot raise or lower their stings voluntarily. The wound they inflict comes from the arching forward flick of their muscular tail. Envenomation occurs when the tip of the spine penetrates the ray's integumentary sheath and lacerates the skin of the victim simultaneously.

      Human injuries also occur during stingray capture, when people attempt to haul them into a boat. Another common scenario is for the victim, wading in shallow water, to accidentally step on a stingray buried just beneath the sand. In these instances, the ray flicks up its tail, usually lacerating the leg. Contrary to popular "nature documentaries," it is extremely hazardous to swim directly over, or in close proximity to, a stingray. A flick of the tail is apt to pierce a person's body, and a serious, even potentially fatal, situation is in the offing.

      The same article goes on to say []:

      Stingray injury has two aspects: 1) immediate physical trauma from the powerful penetrating action of the spine, and 2) envenomation at the site of the wound with the contents of the ray's integumentary sheath. Although venom is not always deposited during a "sting incident," these two insults often work in dangerous synchrony.

      Most traumatic injuries inflicted by rays occur to the lower limbs of bathers and boaters, and to the hands and arms of fisherman, hobbyists and other handlers. If a major blood vessel is lacerated, hemorrhage can occur and could even be fatal. There is at least one case in the literature of a victim whose femoral artery was pierced by the spine of a stingray; the victim bled to death. In about 5% of such injuries, the spine is broken off and remains in the wound, especially when the fish is pulled off the victim. Penetration of any part of the trunk (chest, abdomen, groin) is a serious medical emergency. Introduction of the ray's necrotizing venom directly into the body cavity of a person has been known to cause insidious necrotizing effects on the heart and other internal organs, and death is often inevitable.
      • by timeOday ( 582209 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:54AM (#16036218)
        Stingrays are generally non-aggressive and intelligent creatures. They have been called the "pussycat of the sea,"
        Yeah, but that's always the official line on animals. No matter how many surfers are eaten by sharks in a year, every single news report of an attack will always say how unusual it is, and how sharks normally don't attack people.

        On the other hand, since it was Stever Irwin, it's easy to imagine he was trying to horse around with them. I don't see why that makes people vindictive though. When Dale Earnhart died, I didn't hear anybody say "Ha! Only a fool would drive in Nascar!" We all choose to take some chances, and my guess (just a guess) is that if there had been 100,000 Stever Irwins, more would have died in traffic accidents than due to animals.

        • by Duds ( 100634 ) <dudley@enter[ ] ['spa' in gap]> on Monday September 04, 2006 @03:39AM (#16036395) Homepage Journal
          When Dale Earnhart died, I didn't hear anybody say "Ha! Only a fool would drive in Nascar!"

          You didn't?

          Plus Dale Snr wore an open faced helmet simply because he was too arrogant to wear a proper one like everyone else. PLENTY of people had a go at that after he died, although as I understand it, in that specific case it wouldn't have made huge difference.
          • by prisoner-of-enigma ( 535770 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @09:59AM (#16037509) Homepage
            Plus Dale Snr wore an open faced helmet simply because he was too arrogant to wear a proper one like everyone else.

            Arrogance had nothing to do with it. There was no rule in NASCAR requiring such a helmet, and Dale Sr. felt it restricted his vision and perception too much -- something that (in his opinion) could actually make driving more dangerous. In any event, a full helmet would have done nothing to save him, as it was his skull detaching from his spine due to rapid deceleration that killed him. A HANS device would have saved him, but that was also an "optional" safety device according to NASCAR rules. The rules have since been changed to make both safety devices mandatory.

            Earnhart had been driving in NASCAR for decades with no full helmet, no HANS device, and 60's-era safety devices we wouldn't put on a minivan today. He'd survived countless violent crashes with such protection. He knew the risks and was comfortable with them, otherwise he wouldn't climb in the car. It wasn't arrogance, it was simply a matter of the odds catching up to him. Even with today's safety enhancements, drivers are killed every now and then. It's a regrettable -- but unavoidable -- part of the sport, but that's no different than other "safe" sports. Christopher Reeve was paralyzed in an equestrian accident, for crying out loud. You simply can't engage in most vigorous sports without at least a minor risk of injury.
  • by east coast ( 590680 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:42AM (#16035853)
    It's best to admire nature from afar... like on TV. People think we're just lazy fat hermits but you don't see us getting ate by bears!
  • A real shame (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Centurix ( 249778 ) <> on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:45AM (#16035863) Homepage
    I only live 30 minutes from his Australia Zoo at Beerwah and have watched him perform the croc stuff a couple of times and it was very entertaining.

    I remember trying to take a photograph of my kid at the petting zoo while his kid was in there and I was politely asked not to. Mind you, it was just after the whole 'dangling the baby in front of the baby eating crocodile' incident, I can understand the paranoia at the time.
    • by JeremyALogan ( 622913 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @03:03AM (#16036268) Homepage
      For some reason reading something from/about someone in Australia reminds me of a joke I read on here (can't remember who originally posted it).
      Upon filling out Customs forms to enter Australia I came across a line that asked if I was a convicted felon. I responded with "I didn't know it was still a requirement."
  • R.I.P. Steve. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ColaMan ( 37550 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:46AM (#16035870) Journal
    Poor old Steve - but at least went out was doing what he loved, as opposed to getting hit by a bus or something.
    I met him briefly once or twice - he was a friend of a friend - and while he used to ham it up for the cameras, he was a nice guy and very passionate about wildlife.


    He will be missed.
  • by Heir Of The Mess ( 939658 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:46AM (#16035872)

    This is the fastest I've ever seen news hit the front page on slashdot.

    In fact since this news broke an hour ago I've received 1 phone call, 4 SMS's and 6 e-mails about it. A coworker came running to tell me about it and 88+ news items about it have appeared so far on Google News. Just goes to show that people really care about Steve Irwin.

    With that kind of influence it makes you wonder what he might have achieved if he hadn't died.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by linguizic ( 806996 ) *
      I'm not so sure the speed of this news item travelling shows how much people cared for him. I think it's more indicative of how interested we all have been for years about how he was going to meet his end.
    • Love him or hate him. Steve was a good guy doing what he loved and will be remembered that way.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Wild Wizard ( 309461 )
      This is the fastest I've ever seen news hit the front page on slashdot


      He was killed approximately 11am localtime
      First posted to [] ItN forum at 1:52pm (Radio in FNQ is the orginal source)
      Major Local news sites pick the story up from around 2:10pm onwards
      Wikipedia picks the story up about 5 minutes later
      Major Local news sites go down
      Major Local news sites come back up
      First posted to /. at 3:37pm /. is pretty slow considering
  • by Wylfing ( 144940 ) <brian&wylfing,net> on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:46AM (#16035873) Homepage Journal

    I heard about this a couple of hours ago while talking online on a MUD I used to code for. The first thought I had was that the world was a lesser place without him, just like the world was reduced when Fred Rogers passed. This was a Grade-A human being, and in an odd way very important to me. Let's just say my dog's name is Bindi.

    Good luck, Steve.

  • by 1stdoc ( 959919 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:47AM (#16035878)
    .. it's sad to see him go. As an Australian it was always a bit embarassing the way he perpetuated that particular stereotype but he did a lot of good for the country, not just for tourism but for conservation as well. A fair chunk of his money went straight back to buying up tracts of land for conservation.
    • by simong_oz ( 321118 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @04:36AM (#16036603) Journal
      You know I used to think exactly the same as you - I also cringed that the world thought this was what Australians were like. But the more I saw of the bloke the more I realised it wasn't an act, it was genuine, unbridled enthusiasm. He wanted people to be as fascinated as he was, his enthusiasm was magnetic, and real. He wanted to teach all this stuff to kids. He wanted people to respect these (dangerous) wild animals the way he did. He never held back, he always smiled. And for all those reasons and more, he completely turned me around - I am more than happy that the world thinks this represents Australians at their core - genuine, enthusiastic, and a good mate.

      RIP Steve.
  • Respect (Score:5, Insightful)

    by riceboy50 ( 631755 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:47AM (#16035879)
    I am a little appalled by the reaction of many /.ers. This was a guy with a family. You have no idea whether he was responsible and careful with animals, not being animal trainers yourselves. All you have is your uninformed opinion about it. Have a little respect for the guy, if only because he was more than just a TV star.
    • Re:Respect (Score:5, Insightful)

      by linguizic ( 806996 ) * on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:03AM (#16035980)
      Oh come on! If I had his job I would expect people to crack wise if I died the way he did. Yes, he was a good guy, and I feel bad for his family. But look at it this way: this summer my mom was diagnosed with cancer and underwent chemo. To relieve stress my brother and I would tell yo' mama jokes and they would always end up with "oh yeah? well yo' mama has cancer" which got the biggest laughs. You have to laugh at death, or else you're just going to feel like shit all the time.

      My mother's in remission if anyone cares.
  • FedEx (Score:4, Funny)

    by LouisZepher ( 643097 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:56AM (#16035942)
    I am suddenly reminded of that FedEx commercial he was in. The one where he gets bit by the snake, and he says "That's no problem, we have a shipment of antivenom arriving via FedEx", then an off-camera voice says: "Uh, we didn't use FedEx this time..."
  • by rampant mac ( 561036 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:59AM (#16035961)
    Ignoring all the stupid crap and lame jokes that I'm sure will get posted well before (and after) I make my comments....

    *You* may have not liked the guy; maybe you hated him. His style, his 'in your face attitude' about "Outback" animals might have been a little bit too 'kooky' for what most mainstream Americans are used to. But anyway...

    I met him once while on a flight out to LA (I think he was doing the Late Show /w Leno) and honestly I've never met anyone who had such a zest for life. Seriously, the guy was so upbeat about EVERYTHING, it was hard to ignore him.

    People like him are so special. I'll never forget him, and I hope you all won't either.

  • by Pizaz ( 594643 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:03AM (#16035982)
    I admire Steve's courage, his enthusiasm, his zest for life and for letting us all share a little bit of the wondererous life he lived. Many of us can only hope to be so lucky as to live a life that isn't mundane, tedious and predictable. Steve's been to more places, witnessed more beautiful and fascinating cultures and people and animals than most of us would if we had 3 lives to live. He knew the risks and chose to live his life the way he wanted to live it. Not many people can say that. We're all gonna die. Might as well go out while living life to the fullest.
  • Doin What He Loved (Score:5, Insightful)

    by blueZhift ( 652272 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:18AM (#16036046) Homepage Journal
    All jokes aside, like most people in dangerous professions, he knew the risks and died doing what he loved to do. Given a choice of ways to go, that's not so bad.
  • The real deal (Score:5, Informative)

    by paxmaniac ( 988091 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:19AM (#16036056)
    Steve Irwin was the real deal. He really cared about the environment he worked in. It was revealed earlier this year that he successfully lobbied the Federal Government to oppose plans for the creation of a crocodile 'game hunting' tourist industry in the Northern Territory. He did it privately and quietly - it was only reported after it came to light through freedom of information requests.

    link []

    My hat goes off to you Steve, and my condolences to your family.
  • by svunt ( 916464 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:26AM (#16036090) Homepage Journal
    The first time I saw Steve Irwin, I cringed horribly (I'm Australian), but he got to me. I can honestly say I've never seen a happier person, with so much energy & such a good, innocent heart. I was mocking him a few years ago, mercilessly. Now, I'm feeling kind of weepy. RIP Steve, and my heart goes out to the Irwin family & friends. Thanks on behalf of the animals :)
    • by AcidDan ( 150672 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:50AM (#16036203)
      I think every Australian cringes to a point with Steve (usually because he reminds us of how we really are), before they find out about the man behind the Crocodile Hunter. A few things that I found out from a mate that works at Australia Zoo changed my opinion of him: Firstly, he is genuinely like that - in front of the screen and in everyday life: a larger than life character that is always enthusiastic about wildlife. You can only respect genuiness of spirit. Something I think a lot of us miss today.

      Secondly, he spends all the money he gets reinvesting into australian wildlife in one form or another. Hearing that he buys up huge tracts of land just so the animals living there could just do their thing really got my respect.

      I think it's appropriate that he died doing the things that he loved, but my condolences go to his family, who more than anyone else will fell the loss of a husband, father and decent bloke.

      -- Dan =(
  • Thanks Steve (Score:4, Interesting)

    by martin ( 1336 ) <maxsec@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:47AM (#16036197) Journal
    For your unending enthusiasm, commitment and teamwork (how many people to catch a croc!) in bringing folk a little nearer to those wonderful animals.

    You'll be missed by both the many who never met you, and by those who loved you.

    To your family, may your God comfort you and protect you during these days of mourning.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 04, 2006 @06:34AM (#16036931)
    I'm going to Hell for this:

    So Steve Irwin walks into a barb.
  • by FridayBob ( 619244 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @09:12AM (#16037330) Homepage
    Over the years I've very much enjoyed watching Steve Irwin. I was shocked this morning to hear of his accident and my heart goes out to his family and friends.

    Having said that, I can't say I'm totally surprised. I know something about snakes, including venomous species, having been fascinated by them from a very early age on. That's why I was so astonished when I saw Steve's program for the first time and how he handled snakes. The crocodiles are one thing; reptile wranglers and herpetologists since Ross Allen have employed much the same methods -- there's really no other good way to do it. But, the snakes! When I first saw how he went about "tailing" Australia's highly dangerous elapids, I thought he was nuts! I still think he was nuts for doing that -- in literature, such methods are never recommended. It simply involves risks that are better -- and easy -- to avoid. How can I say it: people in the same business just tend to live longer when they don't take such risks.

    However, we got used to seeing him do those kind of things. It was obvious that Steve had a gift. Only someone who has been around reptiles all of his life and knows instinctively how they behave and react could have done those things and make it look so easy. Indeed, get away with it for so long! It was great for TV, that's for sure! But, I guess that same risk-taking mentality finally got the better of him when he strayed too far from his usual environment. I don't know, but he just seemed a little out of his own element whenever he strapped on a scuba tank over his normal work clothes. Unfortunately, he took that same risk-taking mentality into the water with him and ended up getting stabbed to death by a stingray. How unfortunate. A freak accident? Perhaps, but he was obviously too close and probably doing something most experts would not recommend. But then again, he was Steve Irwin, so what could we expect?

    Was he crazy to do what he did? Maybe, maybe not. But, what he did do was use his talent to show the world that the creatures that he loved, the ones that give so many people nightmares, are actually fascinating. That they're not intrinsicly evil, but animals like any others, with important roles to play in the world's ecosystems. Except that they deserve a little more respect. On the whole, from an educational point of view, I think that what Steve did was good. Yes, he often took risks and seemed overly dramatic, but that also got a lot of people to watch his shows and learn things they otherwise would not have. That can only have been a good thing.

    He will be sorely missed.

Our business in life is not to succeed but to continue to fail in high spirits. -- Robert Louis Stevenson