Remarkable people: Kevin Richardson

Trust is both taught and learnt!

Thanks to Naked Capitalism, we posted an item on the 19th December about an unknown wild-life ranger working in the wildlife refuge area of Lanseria, South Africa.  Here was one of the pictures included in that Post:

The Post finished with an appeal to anyone that knew the name of this Ranger.  Many of you did and responded; thank you!

His name is Kevin Richardson and there is an interesting account of how he works and some of his ‘experiences’ in Revolution Magazine, luckily with online content.  That article is here.  It starts thus:

To do this he does not use the common methods of breaking the animal’s spirit with sticks and chains, instead he uses love, understanding and trust. With this unusual method of training he has developed some exceptionally personal bonds with his students. He sleeps with lions, cuddles newborn hyenas, swims with lionesses.  Kevin can confidently look into their eyes, crouch to the their level and even lie down with them – all taboos in the normal world of wild animal handling – yet he doesn’t get  mauled or attacked.

The article goes on to say that Kevin often works with the animals when they are very young.  Thus he is demonstrating very powerfully that how we behave, especially with our children when they are young, creates the environment for building trust out of consistency of deed and thought.  (By the way, do read some of the comments posted at the end of that Magazine article – some of them make for powerful reading.)

Kevin Richardson at 'work'.

Luckily, thanks to this wired world we now live in, there is also video of Kevin available on YouTube.  A quick search under Kevin Richardson on YouTube will quickly find a number of videos but here are two that I wanted to share with you.

The first will leave you speechless and possibly wet-eyed!

The second is a promotional video by Kevin encouraging us to buy his recent book – and why not!

This is a very remarkable person and it’s an honour to share this with you.  We have so much to learn from all animals.

By Paul Handover

20 thoughts on “Remarkable people: Kevin Richardson

  1. Yes, Paul. This guys is amazing, remarkable, incredible. I posted one of his videos on http://www.TheDailyTail.com months ago, after receiving pictures of him with the lions by e-mail.

    I was so happy to see humans and lions can have a healthy relationship. Thanks for this post, Paul! Kevin’s relationship with wildlife must be celebrated every day!

  2. Thanks Daniela,

    In the midst of so much angst in so many areas for so many people, it is just unbelievably wonderful to see that some are motivated by higher ideals. Great lesson for all.

    I have his book on order and can’t wait to read it.

    Happy New Year to you.

    Paul

  3. Utterly Amazing!! Kevin, are you the only person who can do this? Marlin Perkins would have had a stroke watching this. I believe! Just like the N. O. Saints! Can guests visit this refuge. I live near the Rockefeller Refuge in south Louisiana. Don’t think you would be able to do this with gators but then I’d have said you can’t do this with Lions and such. You are always seconds from death, NOT! People in my office have tried every way to say this is fake….some people have this gift. The animals seem happy and content,,,,,Excellant!

  4. Wonderful interaction. I am a volunteer at the Wildlife Waystation in S. California. I am the team leader with a 19 year old spotted male hyena named Kasane. He is very smart and has over 20 behaviors. Everything is done from the outside of his enclosure and we are thinking of trying to get him out. He is very very sweet and responds to me with love and affection, I am his Mum. I would appreicate any information I can get on how I should go about trying to get him out to walk around our compound, which is 40 acres. He is not aggressive but can be very skittish but responds to me very easily. I love him to death and would like to see him get out. I have read different articles on this hyena and some are very conflicting.

    Thanks in advance for any type of info on the spotted hyena.

    1. Dear May,

      Wonderful to receive your comment. I’m going to try and put you in touch with Kevin as I have no direct or relevant experience personally. I will email you directly in the next few days (travelling just at the moment). Kevin’s book Part of the Pride might be a worthwhile read for you.

      But will be in touch – you can count on it!

      Paul

  5. All of my friends that have seen Kevin’s videos are amazed beyond belief!! It’s nice to know that Lions even though not fully tamed can act tame and form a bond with a human. I am very envious and would love to hug a full grown male Lion someday!! Do you allow visitors Kevin to see your Lions? Let me know.
    P.S. Does having a good relationship with the Pride Male make it possible to be accepted in the pride?

    Thanks Jared

  6. i just know a thing that the person who is so much loved by animals ….needs to be very pure at heart…..the courage to look in the eyes of animlas and understand them is dificult…becoz they belive their instincts……hats off man…..

  7. meghana said it all for me “needs to be pure at heart”….warm fuzzies…yes, like others who have developed an intimate relationship with wild animals he is taking an enormous risk but clearly the challenge to overcome his own instincts has won out

  8. Lions are mammals with a correspondingly large brain; alligators have extremely small brains and work almost entirely on instinct. You certainly CANNOT do this with alligators!

  9. HELLO, kevin richardson

    MY NAME IS VERONICA LANGFORD I’M DEAF
    “zoology and work with lions like you do. If I can’t work where you are, I was thinking of working at a zoo in the United States. I really hope I am one day able to go out to South Africa and work with the lions like you do.
    Kevin Richardson The Lion Whisperer”? DON’T KNOW I’M NOT SURE.
    I WISH GO AND SEE THESE..

    I would like to know how I can contact Kevin Richardson? Thank you..I SAW THERE MY COMPUTER THIS SAYS “MURDERED BY SNAKE”WHAT HAPPEND TO MALE LION.VERY VERY SORRY TALK ABOUT LION IS DIED.I SAW IT.SOUTH AFRICA SEND HIM KEVIN RICHARDSON.WITH YOUR LIONS…FIRENDLY.HEY, BE CAREFUL! WATCH OUT THE SNAKE NOT WANT NEAR LIONS THERE.YOU BETTER YOU GO CHECK MAKE SURE LIONS IS OK OR NOT.DON’T MISS LIONS,HYENAS.IF THESE SNAKE COME NEAR LIONS YOU’LL CATCH THE SNAK.NOT WANT SNAKE TRY KILL LION DON’T BE DIE.I WANT LIONS STILL ALIVE! STAY AWAY FROM LIONS.SNAKE GET OUT OF THESE.DON’T FORGET OK.

    Please can you tell me where I can buy a DVD of the movie ‘WHITE LION’
    Thanks and cheers!

  10. Dear Kevin,

    I would so much appreciate if you could please advice me of an email address or telephone number to contact you. I have guests coming from Moscow in January and would so much love to show them you place. Please advice of who I can contact.
    Much appreciated

    The gift you have to deal with such big cats only comes from within. Take care

  11. Dear Kevin I have one core question for you. Since you are lion expert, there are many chances you would have awareness about their breeding as well. I just want to know about cross breeding of lions and tigers. Is it really true that a female lioness has to go through a c-section to produce a tigon? and a female tigeress has to go through c-section for producing a liger?… Thanks Kevin 🙂

  12. Hello,

    I am fascinated, rather hypnotized by the love of Ricahrdson and his ability to have such loving relationships with his many animals. Please tell me where I can purchase his Movie, “White Liion” and his series on Nat. Geo.

    1. Dear Lucy, I’m only a narrator of this lovely story and do not have the information you seek. I would be surprised if a general Google search didn’t find it. Perhaps if you do, you might like to add a comment so that others may share your enthusiasm. Richardson demonstrates that inner peace and love is easily transmitted to other animals. Did you watch the Rupert Sheldrake interview in this post https://learningfromdogs.com/2011/01/10/serious-learning-from-dogs/ where he scientifically demonstrates the power of telepathy between dogs/cats and their owners? If not, do so. I know you will be astounded.

  13. Paul, this article is amazing. Thank you so much for taking the time to write this, I’m a huge fan of Kevin. So is my Marine boyfriend who actually told me to look him up, this man is truly remarkable. I’ve always wanted to work with animals, my dream is to be a veterinary pathologist but lately I’ve been so stressed with school and college I wasn’t sure if I could make it. But Kevin is the one who has motivated me to continue to pursue my dream, o you think there’s a way I could contact him? I know it’s kinda crazy but I would love to get to speak to him. My boyfriend looks up to him alot too & I’ve tried looking for it but I had no luck. If there’s the possibility that you may know where I could find it or somehow contact him I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you so much.

    1. Maria, firstly welcome to this place and thank you so much for your reply. Secondly, I don’t have any contact details for Kevin but, lastly, I will do whatever I can to help. One of our close neighbours is a vet and he may be able to help you. Do you want to link up on Facebook?

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