Melbourne, Dec 5 : An anti-whaling ship has been christened after late animal-conservationist Steve Irwin.
The ship, named the Steve Irwin, is going to work intercepting Japanese whalers in the Southern Ocean as part of a two-month 500,000-dollar campaign protest campaign dubbed Operation Migaloo after an endangered albino humpback.
The late Crocodile Hunter's widow Terri gave the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society her permission to name the vessel after her husband.
Previously named Robert Hunter, the vessel has a total crew of 52 members.
Terri Irwin, who was present when the new name was unveiled, said the conservation of whales had always been one of her husband's passions.
"Whales have always been in Steve's heart and in 2006 he was investigating the possibility of joining the Sea Shepherd on part of its journey to defend these beautiful animals," News.com.au quoted her, as saying.
Paul Wilson, Sea Shepherd president said that the Irwin family support would give the operation a huge boost as it battled to stop Japanese whalers from targeting endangered humpback and fin whales along with 935 minke whales in the Southern Ocean whale sanctuary.
"Steve Irwin's life demonstrated how one person can make a significant difference in the world," he said.
"Steve wanted to come to Antarctica with us to to defend the whales, and now he will be joining us in spirit with his name emblazoned on the fastest and most powerful ship in the world." (ANI)
© 2007 ANI