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EXCLUSIVE: Concerns for Robert Irwin as the daredevil teen feels pressure to live up to Steve’s legacy

''Everyone's hoping it's just a teenage phase.''
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Last week, in celebration of Steve Irwin Day, Robert posted a photo of himself as a child alongside his dad and sister Bindi, with a touching and poignant caption.

“Thinking a lot about my Dad today and the impact that he made on our planet, inspiring an entire generation,” Robert, 17, wrote.

“I still look up to him every day and while I miss him so much, it means the world to me and my family that each year we can have a day for the world to celebrate what he stood for.”

Robert posted this photo of himself as a child alongside his dad and sister Bindi.


While Robert is clearly a chip off the old block, from his physical appearance to his passion for animals, with just weeks to go before his 18th birthday marks his entry into adulthood, close family friends are “increasingly concerned” about the Australia Zoo star.

Worried that Steve’s legacy is weighing heavily on him, they fear Robert’s obvious ambition to take up the heroic mantle of Crocodile Hunter 2.0 could be a dangerous one.

“Robert’s doing some very risky things lately,” says a family insider.

“The fear is this daredevil business is hiding something deeper, like it’s a way for him to connect with his dad.”

Last month, Robert posted a string of photos online of him in precarious positions with crocodiles, sparking worried fans to comment that he’s way too young to be taking such big risks.

“It’s concerning his mum Terri, who really worries about Robert’s obvious need to come out of his dad and sister’s shadows.”

With Bindi focused on family life with husband, Chandler and their eight-month-old baby Grace, friends say Robert feels now is his chance to shine and prove he’s a worthy contender for his dad’s legacy.

“He wants to push forward with every opportunity he’s got and even do his own show.”

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And the lure of performing alongside dangerous crocodiles, with moves that made his dad famous, is proving irresistible to Robert.

“The Irwins have always been proud of their ease with all kinds of animals, but Robert is fearless,” adds the family pal.

“Everyone’s hoping it’s just a teenage phase and he’s feeling pressure to live up to his dad’s legacy.

“But soon Terri won’t be able to tell him what he can and can’t do. If Robert wants to wrestle an even bigger croc than his dad did, then she won’t be able to stop him.”

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