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Steve Irwin Dead 1004

mkosmo writes "News.com.au 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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  • 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?
  • A real shame (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Centurix ( 249778 ) <centurix.gmail@com> 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 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.

  • by BifurcatedFocus ( 579276 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:47AM (#16035880)
    Yes. Very sad for the kids, especially. Sad for his wife too, but she made the choice to marry such a risk-taker. Speaking of which, who was watching the kids anyway? The Age reports: It's believed his American-born wife Terri is trekking on Cradle Mountain in Tasmania and authorities are trying to reach her with news of her husband's death.
  • by linguizic ( 806996 ) * on Monday September 04, 2006 @01:49AM (#16035887)
    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.
  • 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 Minstrel Boy ( 787690 ) <kevin_stevens@hotmail.com> on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:10AM (#16036007)
    Sting rays can be big critters, and when they whip that tail the barb goes where it goes. Friend of the family took one through the knee decades ago - that's through the knee JOINT, from posterior lower to anterior upper leg. Three months in the hospital (infection) and never walked thereafter without a limp. People who work in/around the shallows are much more afraid of sting rays than shark attack - when you've got an eight-inch spike through you, it doesn't help much to say it was "inadvertent" rather than "intentional".

    On the bright side, Terri's now available! ;)

  • by Wild Wizard ( 309461 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:18AM (#16036052) Journal
    This is the fastest I've ever seen news hit the front page on slashdot


    He was killed approximately 11am localtime
    First posted to www.whirlpool.net.au [whirlpool.net.au] 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 trolleymusic ( 938183 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:20AM (#16036063) Homepage
    I feel sorry for his kids too, one of them is named after a weed http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bindi_(plant) [wikipedia.org] which grows in all sorts of places in Australia...
  • by DarrylKegger ( 766904 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:24AM (#16036083)
    ..there's a very good chance his death was captured on video. How long till it hits the net?
  • 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 :)
  • Re:oblig (Score:1, Interesting)

    by phulegart ( 997083 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:32AM (#16036123)
    Hell, he dangled his child over crocs before. It must have looked exactly like the whole chickens they feed them. This was a man who wanted to go out exactly as he did. doing what he loved. He might have regretted the timing, but I think we all expected a croc to get him anyway. The stingray kinda came out of left field.

    Funny and sad. Sweet and sour. mmm. Chinese.
  • Re:Ironically... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by linguizic ( 806996 ) * on Monday September 04, 2006 @02:34AM (#16036133)
    I use those words all the time with regards to people. I used those exact words to put mother's cancer into perspective. I don't believe in Jesus, so I get no consulation(sp?) from the bible, or any other religious text. Thinking about my mother's genes living on in my offspring helps me.
  • 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.

  • 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 [nih.gov] has ever survived that.
  • glad that's over (Score:1, Interesting)

    by drDugan ( 219551 ) * on Monday September 04, 2006 @03:05AM (#16036278) Homepage
    As awful as it sounds, I'm glad that he won't be screwing with animals any more. The way he dealt with animals always made me feel like they should get a good chomp or poke back at him. Glad that one finally did!
  • by renegadesx ( 977007 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @03:15AM (#16036311)
    He earnt my hatered spreading that stereotype, but i learned to live with it, its just like alot of people i know stereotyping americans as arrogant fat self loving over patriotic wankers. Every country has their stereotypes I guess
  • by Duds ( 100634 ) <dudley@enterspac ... minus herbivore> 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 Anonymous Coward on Monday September 04, 2006 @03:57AM (#16036469)
    Seeing how he has kids I fail to see how this is darwinian.

    It's still darwinian. If he lived till he died of natural causes, he might have had a lot more children. Having 2 instead of 4 means that there are greater chances that his genes will not carry on (2 children more likely to die that all 4, even if they are all in the same car crash, for example) or will otherwise slow down the march of his genes.

    The more intelligent, more healthy person will likely have more healthy intelligent children which will out number his. We are fucking with natural selection with medicine anyway. I should be dead for example.
  • by Rameriez ( 644702 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @04:29AM (#16036578) Homepage

    It might be interesting to note that the Wikipedia article on stingrays [wikipedia.org] has already been locked due to vandalism, only hours after the news hit the Web. Mr Irwin's death has had a much greater impact online than I originally anticipated.

  • 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.
  • by wadiwood ( 601205 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @05:08AM (#16036698) Journal
    I think he probably landed on the bottom without checking the sand first. This is something I've seen him do more than once in underwater documentaries and it makes me cringe every time. He wouldn't go wading in murky water he knew has crocodiles in it so why does he scuba dive onto sandy bottoms containing hidden crabs, stingrays, stone fish, stargazers, flounder, sand worms and other sea life? Some of these critters can inflict a lot of damage.

    I read his heart got pierced by the barb (fatal injury) - so he either landed on the stingray, chest first, or he was trying to ride it.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 04, 2006 @05:21AM (#16036737)
    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!

    You know, this is off-topic, but earlier I saw a showing of Mike Judge's new film "Idiocracy". The premise of the film is that, without predators to stop such things, the stupid breed the intelligent out of existence. Entertainment or prophecy?
  • Re:oblig (Score:5, Interesting)

    by cloricus ( 691063 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @07:11AM (#16037017)
    If you watch the interview by Andrew Denton (Enough Rope) you will see what sort of person he was. He wasn't some one who chased profits as his primary motivation and really did love the work. The shows were only a side to everything else like Australia Zoo and reserves. I would much rather that people looked up to him, even if you think he is just putting on a tough act, than say Bill Gates. Just my opinion though.
  • by stiggle ( 649614 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @07:11AM (#16037018)
    The kids have always had the extended family of the Zoo staff.
    There is more footage than just the crazy stuff of Steve, there is a lot of him being a caring father during the filming of the TV series. Who else would be laying concrete with a toddler?
  • by Diag ( 711760 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @07:22AM (#16037037)
    "Out of curiosity, what do you mean by Irwin reminding you of the way you really are?"

    Most Australians hadn't even heard of Steve Irwin before he was very popular in the USA and other places. I think my first reaction when seeing him the first time was "Oh no, he's another Crocodile Dundee".

    But after a while we saw that that seems to be his genuine character. Some years ago, most Australian men were very similar in many ways to Steve Irwin. Nowadays, in the larger cities, there's a diverse mix of "personalities". Some people might think Aussies like Irwin don't really exist anymore, and that his persona was not genuine. But you just have to drive 50 kilometres out of the city, and there are Iriwns-aplenty.

    We Australians are tragically prone to cultural cringe [wikipedia.org]. (We invented the term, in fact). I think it's a result of spending the last 200 years as a distant, disregarded, relatively lightly populated colony of England, who still thought of us as a bunch of convicts. Recently we seem to have largely transferred the attention of our collective inferiorty complex to the USA.

    Sigh. You asked...
  • Re:oblig (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Skater ( 41976 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @09:45AM (#16037445) Homepage Journal
    This is true. Popular Science did an article [popsci.com] where the author kept a diary of the risks he was encountering and would rate them, then they showed the diary to risk experts and got comments. What you said is exactly correct: people downplay the risks of, say, riding in a car, because they do it so often, while they worry a lot more about the risks of flying - despite the fact that flying is far safer than riding in a car.
  • Cause of death (Score:3, Interesting)

    by spineboy ( 22918 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @10:11AM (#16037561) Journal
    Was probably cardiac tamponade. The heart has a little baggy/sack around it called the pericardium. With penetrating injuries to the heart, sime blood leaks out with each beat and gets into the bag, thusdepriving the heart of room to expand. The heart is then basically "choked", and it can't pump blood, unless someone withdraws the fluid from the sack and plugs the hole. The pericardium only holds about 40 cc of fluid or so - not much.
  • Re:oblig (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Marcos Eliziario ( 969923 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @12:17PM (#16038271) Homepage Journal
    Well, I am a brazilian, never had travelled to the US at that time, had no american friends (at that time, also), and didn't know a single person that has died on Sep 11th. Yet, it struck me with a feeling of personal loss and it definitelly changed my views on life. I remember walking as a zoombie on Rio de Janeiro streets and trying to be close to people I love. For me, and for all the folks I knew that were not stupid pseudo-leftist dumb-asses 9/11 was as close and as real as if someone droped a nuke on Rio de Janeiro. Just because you're a cold guy that could never feel anything for people beyond your closed circle, it doesn't mean everybody acts the same.
  • by Overly Critical Guy ( 663429 ) on Monday September 04, 2006 @12:48PM (#16038466)
    Well I've met my fair share of Americans and I can say that they come across as a little self-absorbed.

    Well, I have this amazing revelation to give to you, which is that every society on earth comes across as a little self-absorbed. We're all loud eccentrics; it's called being human.

"I don't believe in sweeping social change being manifested by one person, unless he has an atomic weapon." -- Howard Chaykin