PETA Slammed For 'Pathetic' And 'Disrespectful' Steve Irwin Tweets
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As such, it is not surprising that fans are not best pleased that People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) decided to take aim at the late Australian icon on what would have been his 57th birthday.
'The Crocodile Hunter' was killed by a stingray in 2006 and on Friday, Google paid homage to him, changing its doodle to an illustration of him holding a crocodile.
PETA evidently didn't think the tribute was deserved, arguing that it sent a 'dangerous' message.
However, judging by the response on Twitter, it seems the majority of people didn't agree with the animal rights organisation's message, with many pointing out Irwin's various contributions to animal conservation.
One person commented: "Where is your habitat for saving animals? You have a wildlife preserve anywhere? Do you have 1,000s of acres preserving animals from extinction?
"Steve Irwin spent his whole life wanting to save animals. Ya'll are becoming 'progressively' pathetic.
"What a croc."
Another said: "Steve dedicated his life to animal conservation. He brought attention to animals who needed protection, and he taught a generation of children, including me, the value of all life. How each and every animal should be respected.
"Thank you Google, for recognising #SteveIrwin."
A third added: "Never mind what charity work he did for endangered animals, the funds he raised, animals he helped, the people he educated.. he was a brilliant person who did so much for so many people and animals. @peta you are wrong to disrespect such a wonderful man."
Another highlighted the organisation's public criticism of Karl Lagerfeld, following the Chanel creative director's death earlier in the week, simply writing: "Damn Peta loves disparaging the dead for RTs."
In subsequent tweets, PETA elaborated on its criticism of Irwin, claiming he did not act like a 'real wildlife expert'.
Irwin became internationally famous following the success of TV series The Crocodile Hunter, a wildlife documentary series which he co-hosted with wife Terri between 1996 and 2007.
As well as hosting other TV shows, the couple also owned and operated Australia Zoo, which was originally founded by Irwin's parents, and in 2002 they founded the Steve Irwin Conservation Foundation, later renamed Wildlife Warriors Worldwide.
In 2003, he told The Age: "I consider myself a wildlife warrior. My mission is to save the world's endangered species."