KEVIN RICHARDSON aka The Lion Whisperer is South African self-taught zookeeper who works with African lions.
Born on October 8 1974, in Johannesburg, South Africa, Richardson has been featured in many documentaries, movies and commercials, for facilitating the controversial practice of lion cub petting while working at the Lion Park.
He has slept next to, fed, and lived with lions and relies on intuition rather than static rules in his interactions.
Richardson had been bitten, scratched, punctured but he is not dissuaded by these.
He has also worked with big cats like cheetahs, leopards, and hyenas, but prefers lions to any other big cats.
Growing up in the neighbourhood of Orange Grove during his childhood days, Richardson studied zoology but quit after two years.
Then he started taking courses in physiology and anatomy and began a career in exercise physiology.
At 23, he had the opportunity to work as a handler for two six-month-old lion cubs, Meg and Ami which he later rescued, thus began his career as Lion Whisperer.
Today, the Kevin Richardson Wildlife Sanctuary provides a self-sustaining African carnivore sanctuary for the purposes of wild species preservation.
Through education, outreach and funding, it’s mission is to bring awareness to the rapid decline of large carnivores in Africa due to habitat loss, human-predator conflict, the illegal bush meat trade, unscrupulous hunting, disease, and illegal trade.