- Steve Irwin’s son won a Wildlife Photographer of the Year award for a photo of Australian wildfire.
- Robert, 17, photographed the blaze near a reserve named after his father.
- He used a drone that “only â€¯had a few minutes of battery left â€¯to â€¯spare” to capture the image.
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Environmentalism runs in the Irwin family.
On Wednesday, Robert Irwin, the son of late wildlife expert, zookeeper, and conservationist Steve Irwin, was awarded the Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award for his striking photo of Australian wildfire.
Robert is a TV personality, along with his older sister Bindi and their mum Terri, and in recent years, he’s also made a name for himself as a nature and wildlife photographer.
According to the announcement, Robert’s photo, called “Bushfire,” was taken via drone in early 2020, when a blaze broke out near the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve in Queensland, Australia.
A bright orange line of flames, centered in the photo, separates the relatively unaffected green trees on the left from the charred ones on the right.
Robert, 17, told Natural History Museum’s Alison Groom that he was camping in the area when he noticed smoke.
“I onlyâ€¯had a few minutes of battery leftâ€¯toâ€¯spare when I finally got over there, so I took the drone right in the middle of it, right in theâ€¯thick of the smoke toâ€¯capture this shot,” he said.
According to a press release on the Wildlife Photographer of the Year website, the area where the photograph was taken “is of high conservation value and is home to over 30 different ecosystems with many endangered species.”
Wildlife Photographer of the Year is developed and produced by the Natural History Museum, London.
Devastating wildfires broke out across Australia in September 2019 and continued into 2020
In early January 2020, Insider reporter Aylin Woodward wrote that since the beginning of the bushfire season in September 2019, more than 25.5 million acres of land had burned down, at least 25 people had died, and more than a billion animals were feared dead.
The younger Irwin took the opportunity of his award win to call attention to the environmentalism that’s long been important to his family.
“I think we’ve seen with the fires, not only here in Australia but also in the Amazon, in the United States, all over the world, we’re really starting to see that we’re reaching a tipping point,” Robert said in a video filmed by the Natural History Museum. “It is up to us humans to make a difference and make a change for our environments.”