AUSSIE singing sisters the Veronicas and a seven-year-old girl who raised almost $20,000 for conservation have been named Australia Zoo's Wildlife Warriors for 2010.

Terri Irwin today recognised the efforts of the next generation of Wildlife Warriors by honouring Jess and Lisa Origliasso, and young Chloe Tsangaris.

The awards were presented at Australia Zoo’s VIP Breakfast attended by over 400 supporters who shared in the 40th birthday celebration for the award-winning Beerwah tourist attraction.

Terri particularly paid tribute to Steve Irwin's parents Bob and Lyn, who started the wildlife park in 1970 and ran it for 22 years before it was taken over by Steve and Terri in 1992.

Chloe, of Brisbane, is a passionate Joey Ambassador and the highest individual fundraiser for Steve Irwin Day both in 2008 and in 2009, having raised close to $20,000 for conservation projects.

The Veronicas were given the gong for their passion for wildlife around the world, including as Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors ambassadors.

They are also heavily involved in raising awareness of Steve Irwin Day held in memory of the crocodile hunter who died on September 4, 2006 from a stingray barb to the chest.

"It is such an honour to be involved with an organisation that is so passionate and proactive within wildlife conservation," the pop duo said in a statement.

Guests at this year's VIP breakfast were given an exclusive look at historical memorabilia that has helped to shape the Zoo's culture and success.

Terri Irwin told guests the Zoo planned to expand into the US market by establishing a new zoo in Las Vegas, to spread the conservation message to the 37 million people visiting the gambling mecca each year.

She said that would be followed by the expansion of the Beerwah facility which would include a resort for 300 to 350 people.

Video: Terri Irwin talks about Zoo expansion

More on Australia Zoo's US plans and its 40 year history in Saturday's Sunshine Coast Daily.
 


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