Ben Cropp
Ben Cropp is an Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

n former shark hunter and six-time Australian spearfishing
Spearfishing is an ancient method of fishing that has been used throughout the world for millennia. Early civilizations were familiar with the custom of spearing fish from rivers and streams using sharpened sticks....

 champion, having retired from that trade in 1962 to pursue oceanic documentary
Documentary film
Documentary films constitute a broad category of nonfictional motion pictures intended to document some aspect of reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction or maintaining a historical record...

Filmmaking is the process of making a film, from an initial story, idea, or commission, through scriptwriting, casting, shooting, directing, editing, and screening the finished product before an audience that may result in a theatrical release or television program...

 (having produced some 150 wildlife documentaries) and conservation efforts. One of his efforts for The Disney Channel, The Young Adventurers, was nominated for an Emmy award.

In 1977, he discovered the wreck of HMS Pandora
HMS Pandora (1779)
HMS Pandora was a 24-gun Porcupine-class sixth-rate post ship of the Royal Navy launched in May 1779. She is best known as the ship sent in 1790 to search for the Bounty and the mutineers who had taken her...

, almost concurrently with American explorer Steve Domm. John Heyer, another film maker at that time had done extensive research to establish the area the Pandora wreck was in. Ben Cropp followed John Heyer's expedition by boat and found it in this area before John Heyer did. Ben Cropp also lays claim to over 100 other shipwreck
A shipwreck is what remains of a ship that has wrecked, either sunk or beached. Whatever the cause, a sunken ship or a wrecked ship is a physical example of the event: this explains why the two concepts are often overlapping in English....


In 1999, he was created a member of the Order of Australia
Order of Australia
The Order of Australia is an order of chivalry established on 14 February 1975 by Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia, "for the purpose of according recognition to Australian citizens and other persons for achievement or for meritorious service"...

 for his marine and coastal conservation
Conservation movement
The conservation movement, also known as nature conservation, is a political, environmental and a social movement that seeks to protect natural resources including animal, fungus and plant species as well as their habitat for the future....

 efforts, and for the promotion and awareness of the Australian marine environment.

In 2000, he was inducted into the International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame's inaugural induction, sharing the honour with Jacques-Yves Cousteau
Jacques-Yves Cousteau
Jacques-Yves Cousteau was a French naval officer, explorer, ecologist, filmmaker, innovator, scientist, photographer, author and researcher who studied the sea and all forms of life in water...

, among others.

On 4 September 2006, he commented to the media on the possible circumstances of contemporary Steve Irwin
Steve Irwin
Stephen Robert "Steve" Irwin , nicknamed "The Crocodile Hunter", was an Australian television personality, wildlife expert, and conservationist. Irwin achieved worldwide fame from the television series The Crocodile Hunter, an internationally broadcast wildlife documentary series which he co-hosted...

's death. After reviewing footage of the incident and speaking with the cameraman who filmed it, Cropp offered the following:
He currently resides in Port Douglas
Port Douglas, Queensland
Port Douglas is a town in Far North Queensland, Australia, approximately north of Cairns. Its permanent population was 948 residents in 2006. The town's population can often double, however, with the influx of tourists during the peak tourism season May–September. The town is named in honour of...

, Queensland
Queensland is a state of Australia, occupying the north-eastern section of the mainland continent. It is bordered by the Northern Territory, South Australia and New South Wales to the west, south-west and south respectively. To the east, Queensland is bordered by the Coral Sea and Pacific Ocean...

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