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How Steve Irwin's family is carrying on his legacy

It's been 11 years since TV host and conservationist Steve Irwin died suddenly; now, his family is returning to Animal Planet with their own show.
by Randee Dawn / / Source: TODAY

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When "Crocodile Hunter" TV host and conservationist Steve Irwin died suddenly in 2006, it shocked the world and, of course, his family: wife Terri, daughter Bindi and son Robert.

But the trio has never taken a step back from following in Irwin's footsteps, continuing to promote the cause of conservation and sharing their love and knowledge of animals with all comers. And now they've got some big news: their new show on Animal Planet will be coming out this fall!

"It seems it seems like it's been way more than 11 years [since Irwin's death], and in some ways the blink of an eye," said Terri Irwin, 53, on a visit to TODAY Friday with Bindi, 19, and Robert, 14. "It's a bizarre little time warp you get into when you're dealing with grief, but we're glad to be back."

The new show will appear on the same network "Crocodile Hunter" once did, and will focus on happenings at Australia Zoo, owned by Terri, and with their nonprofit organization Wildlife Warriors.

Working with animals is "a part of who we are, it's not just what we do," added Bindi. "We do want to carry on in Dad's footsteps, and make sure everything he worked so hard for continues on."

Of course, in the time since Steve's death his children have grown up: Bindi has a serious boyfriend in American Chandler Powell (who was also on hand at TODAY), and Robert is already fielding comments about how much he resembles his father.

"Mum ... found this old photo of dad and showed [it to] me," he recalled. "I said, 'It's no big deal, that's a photo of me' and she said, 'No, it's dad when he was your age.' ... I'm so privileged to be able to continue his amazing legacy."

In addition, Steve will be honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame later this year.

"Steve would have been so excited," said Terri. "He loved everything about filming, and getting that mainstream message to people. Even if you're not into conservation, to try and enlighten people to love wildlife."

Follow Randee Dawn on Twitter.

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