The Pride and Patterson

The Pride and Patterson

Father, mother and custodian of the lion and elephant – Gareth Patterson shares his remarkable story of courage and conservation. Listen to the full interview here!


Gareth Patterson, known as "Ra de Tau," father of lions as he came to be called in Botswana, is internationally recognised for his efforts to protect the lions and elephants and is one of the last remaining “Wildlife Warriors” of Africa.


Gareth’s love for the wild has spurred various projects surrounding animal rights and this morning he joined The Complimentary Breakfast to talk about two of his latest books which share tales of subjects very close to his heart - The Secret Elephants and My Lion’s Heart.


In part 1 and 2 of the interview you will hear Gareth talking about the incredibly emotional and tragic story of his three lion children (the male Batian and his two sisters Furaha and Rafiki) who he rehabilitated by living with them and helping them to adapt, and how they saved his life from a leopard before he lost two to trophy hunters. He also talks about the shocking statistics of the remaining lions in Africa and the spiritual principals of the lions that can be instilled within ourselves.


Part 3 of the interview focuses on The Secret Elephants and how Gareth came to discover that more than one of these majestic creatures roam the Knysna Forests. He talks about how he made this discovery and then not wanting to betray them by invading what he has dubbed the "secret place of the elephants." Also be prepared to feel rather shell-shocked when he reveals how many elephants we are losing a year, and what trauma poaching is leaving behind.


Full interview here:


Watch this YouTube clip of rare and unique film footage of Gareth being led by Adamson lioness, Rafiki, to her new-born cubs.


Show's Stories