“Russell and Terri have definitely been spending more time together in recent times,” says the source.
“They’ve always been close and are closer than ever, and everyone is wondering if they’re even back together. All their friends are desperately hoping so.”
According to the source close to them, Terri, 54, and her children, Bindi, 20, and Robert, 15, have been regular visitors at Russell’s 320-hectare rural property near Coffs Harbour, which is a six-hour drive south of Australia Zoo.
“Terri and the kids have been going to Nana Glen to spend time with Russell – and Terri has done a few solo trips as well.
"They hang out together and enjoy the scenery – Terri and the kids just love Russ’ property, they can really relax and enjoy nature there, just the four of them,” confides the insider.
“Russell is such a wonderful influence on Terri and she’s always glowing when she’s with him or has just spent time with him.”
Last December Terri gushed about her close friend, admitting, “I do really, really think the world of him.”
She added during the interview with Lisa Wilkinson on The Project that she admired Russell’s passion for animals and conservation.
“He loves wildlife, he is very considerate about helping what we are doing and is a good guy,” she said.
Russell, 55, was a close pal to Steve Irwin and on his death in 2006 was the first friend to rush to Terri’s side and offer support.
She explained in 2017: “After Steve passed, you find out who your true friends are. And Russell has been very loyal as a great friend.”
Around the same time, the Boy Erased actor explained how important his relationship with the Irwin family was to him.
“I was great friends with Steve and his wife and his kids are really important to me.
"They’re beautiful people,” he explained in 2017, adding that despite their closeness, they weren’t romantically involved.
“Terri is one of the greatest women I’ve ever met in my life, without there being implication of intimacy or whatever.
"You know, I do love Terri Irwin, I love her kids and I love how she’s kept the memory of Steve alive, and respected the work that the two of them had begun and she’s an absolute champion, but we’re not in a relationship.”
Last year, however, Russell – whose divorce from Danielle Spencer was finalised in December 2017 – admitted he was finally ready to commit to another long term relationship.
“There is a craving for some sort of intimacy in the future,” he explained, adding, “I really need that. I thought I could just tough it out and not worry too much. But you just want the feeling that you have someone you can make a plan with.”
Last year, Terri confided that she still felt a “connection” with Steve – who was 44 when he was fatally stung by a stingray – and as a result hadn’t dated since his death.
Bindi admitted that, “Honestly, all I want in life is Mum’s happiness,” seemingly implying she was hopeful that her mum might find love again.
Russell and Terri had an on-off relationship for years, but everyone is hoping that they make it official this time,” says the insider.
“They’re such a perfect couple and we’d all love to see them grow old together.”
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