A new report has suggested the Irwin family's Australia Zoo is under even more financial strife than previously believed.
Terri Irwin, 57, and her family admitted earlier this year that Australia Zoo is under great financial stress with one employee now revealing redundancies have already been taking place.
A source spoke to New Idea, revealing "several key staffers" have been made redundant in the past few weeks.
The magazine also reports Terri "might soon explore the option of selling" the once-popular tourist destination.
Terri recently took to Twitter to share she was feeling homesick, writing, "I miss my home town, Eugene Oregon.
"I miss my family, friends and beautiful wildlife," she added.
Bindi Irwin, 23, admitted last year the zoo was almost on the brink of collapse as the family struggled to keep the business afloat during the Covid pandemic.
"For us, this year was filled with both tremendous joy and heartbreaking loss," Bindi shared on New Year's Eve. "Our Wildlife Hospital was the busiest it’s ever been due to the Australian bushfires that raged across the country. We worked hard to send support to the front lines of destruction.
"We have now treated over 100,000 patients since our Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital opened. This year marked Australia Zoo’s 50th birthday and for the first time in our history we had to close our gates to guests for 78 days due to the pandemic. Our animal food bills alone are about $80,000 per week and we spent our days trying to keep our team and family of animals safe."
She continued, "Every moment of every day the question of when or if we would recover burned in the back of our minds. However, we were reminded that there is always hope on the horizon. Things turned around in Australia and we were able to open our doors once again to people needing a safe haven of gardens and wildlife. Our conservation work continued to go from strength to strength, supporting species protection around the world."
In January, a source told Woman's Day, "They still aren't out of the woods yet."
With the Covid pandemic continuing through 2021 and borders being closed, it's been another tough year.
"The zoo relies on international visitors, and with the borders closed, indeed some state borders closed, and even Aussies struggling to get home, that's a sizable chunk of their income gone," the source said.
During an episode of Crikey! It's the Irwins, Terri previously shared that the Sunshine Coast zoo spends a huge $400,000 a week on wages.
In more positive news, the Irwins have had an incredible year with Bindi and husband Chandler Powell welcoming daughter Grace Warrior Irwin Powell in March.
On Sunday, the pair celebrated Chandler's 25th birthday with Bindi sharing a sweet tribute to her husband of one year.
"Happy Birthday, sweetheart!" she wrote. "Eight years of falling more in love with you every day. My best friend, adventurer, husband, and the greatest Dadda to our Grace Warrior. You embrace every day with a determination that I admire. You carry kindness and sunshine in your heart, no matter the challenge.
"You walk through life with strength and give your time to anyone who needs a helping hand. You make our little family smile all the time and you remind me daily to take a breath and appreciate the now. Plus, your smile always makes my heart skip a beat. You’re the very best, babe. I love you. Forever and forever."
The family also celebrated Steve Irwin Day on Monday with Bindi penning a tribute to her father which simply read, "Your legacy will live on forever. I love you for even longer."
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