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Gareth Patterson 

Award-winning wildlife expert, author and public speaker, Gareth Patterson, is known internationally for his efforts to greater protect the lions and elephants of Africa. His wildlife work has featured widely in the media, books and in documentaries. Patterson told of his life with the famous Adamson lions, which he returned to the wilds after the murder of Born Free legend George Adamson, in the books, Last of the Free and With My Soul Amongst Lions. His books have been published in many editions and languages worldwide.


The Secret Elephants, Patterson's latest book tells of his eight-year odyssey to uncover truths about the world’s most southerly elephants, the elusive and highly endangered Knysna elephants of the southern Cape, South Africa.


Patterson was the recipient of the Operation Survival Award and of the prestigious Cape Times Environmental Award. He has been an adjudicator for the SAB Environmental Journalist of the Year Awards.


The Search for the Knysna Elephants, a documentary about Patterson's findings on the remarkable Knysna elephants, has been screened internationally by Animal Planet.  He is continuing his research on the elephants, as well as undertaking field work on the existence of another mysterious denizen of the southern Cape, the previously unknown about coastal leopards.


A highly self-motivated person who lives by the adage ‘Never give up’, Patterson delivers inspiring presentations and talks drawn from his life and experiences.


Books that have featured Gareth Patterson’s wildlife work.


The Great Safari. Adrian House. Harper Collins, 1993.

Roaring at the Dawn. Brian Jackman. Swan Hill Press, 1995.

An African Journal. Horst Klemm, 1996.

All Things Wild and Wonderful. Kobie Kruger. Penguin, 1997

More to Life than Surface. Kate Turkington. Penguin, 1997.

The Bible According to Noah: Theology as if Animals Mattered. Gary Kowalski. Lantern Books, 2001

Children of the Sun God: The White Lion Mystery. Linder Tucker. Earthyear Books, 2001.

Wilderness Family. Kobie Kruger. Bantam Books. 2002.

Mail & Guardian Bedside Book. Edited by Shaun de Waal, Jacana. 2003.

Science, Soul and the Spirit of Nature: Leading thinkers on the restoration of man and creation. The Princess of the Netherlands, Irene van Lippe-Biesterfeld. Bear & Company. 2005.


Patterson is regularly contacted by journalists to comment on wildlife and environmental issues.


Print Media.


Extensive South African print media coverage. The Times, Daily Telegraph, Sunday Telegraph, Sunday Times, Today, Manchester Evening News, The Mirror, Hello! Magazine, Women’s Weekly, Women’s Own, The Australian Magazine, Life, Conde Nast, BBC Wildlife Magazine, Africa Geographic and many others.





The Born to be Free documentary was screened on more than thirty channels worldwide. 

Patterson’s Shadows of Gold and Grey documentary won Best Newcomer Award at the United Nations Environmental Film Festival. His work has featured on the BBC, ITN, Sky, Discovery, 60 Minutes, NBC, SABC and many others. The documentary, The Search for the Knysna Elephants, has just been screened by Animal Planet UK.


Some of Patterson’s speaking engagements.


Johnson and Johnson, Young Presidents Organisation, South African Breweries, Royal Geographic Society, London, International Symposium of Wildlife, International Rally for Animal Welfare, Italy, The President of Botswana, University of the Third Age, Wildlife Society of South Africa, Association of Wildlife Clubs of Botswana, Wildlife Society of Zimbabwe, woman’s groups, book clubs, booksellers, government departments, schools and many others.  


Some reviews.


‘An extraordinary tale of endurance, triumph and tragedy’

The Times, London.


‘An extraordinary story’

Daily Mail


‘It is both heart-warming and heart-reading and I defy you to read it without a tear in your eye’

Manchester Evening News


‘Patterson soldiers on, triumphing over adversities that would have broken lesser men…like Adamson before him, he cannot bear to think of a lion that is not free’


The Times, London.

Gareth with Tuli

Gareth and George Adamson

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