CACH withdraws from Network Ten’s, I’m a Celebrity


“I’m a Celebrity” blatantly ignores conservation advice

Network Ten’s Australian TV show “I’m a celebrity get me out of here” engaged in irresponsible scenes exploiting wildlife including a 5 week old white lion cub and three very young leopard cubs.

Dean Geyer, one of the celebrities, nominated CACH (Campaign Against Canned Hunting) as his charity of choice; one would assume the producers would have engaged in research which would have alerted them to the link between the cub petting industry and canned hunting. Regardless, they went ahead with petting lions and leopards 5 weeks old and less.

When we initially contacted the producers after seeing a 5 week old white lion cub used in one of the challenges, it seemed they had been duped (just like thousands of tourists every year). They were told that the lion cub had been abandoned by its’ mother, that the other two cubs had died, one drowned, and that the cubs were part of a breeding program. We asked which lion ecologist was monitoring this program – no response. We soon discovered that the animal sourcing contractor was given one day to locate a cub even after he said he needed more time.

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On watching the footage we were very concerned to see a cub being exploited in a celebrity challenge with Jo Beth Taylor, using her feet to guess what animal it was. A 5 week old lion cub! It took more than a week for Network Ten to answer our enquiry, and then we were directed to Ben Ulm, ITV Studios in South Africa. We notified them about CACH wishing to withdraw as the use of cubs was absolutely unacceptable, he was worried about Dr Chris Brown’s reputation and insisted that a vet handling a cub is very different to the general public, a redundant argument as there was no veterinary reason for this cub to be handled. In terms of responsible broadcasting, what message does this send to the viewers other than “come to South Africa and play with cubs”?  We were also told we had no right to project our ethical tourism values onto them and that our position is merely philosophical.

It’s very disappointing that Network Ten didn’t do their research but what’s more appalling is that they ignored expert conservation advice. They were well informed and yet chose to then let Shane Warne and Val Lehman engage YET again with three very young leopard cubs, handling, petting and cuddling them in a defiant show of indulgence and support of the petting/canned hunting industry.

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When conservation groups work tirelessly to protect Africa’s wildlife, which includes pointing out that commercial captive breeding and predator interactions make no contribution whatsoever, we find the approach of Ben Ulm, ITV Studios and Network Ten irresponsible and reckless. Ulm was well informed after several calls explaining the link between cub petting, canned hunting and the lion bone trade industries when we discussed CACH’s withdrawal.

Africa’s lions require urgent attention. It’s estimated as few as 20,000 are left in the wild. However, it needs to be understood that breeding lions in captivity and exposing them to commercial exploitation has nothing to do with solving their plight. And the continuous support of the breeding facilities by tourists and television stations simply feeds the cycle of brutality and misinformation.

Australian volunteers and tourists are duped into this conservation CON only to discover that they have unwittingly been part of a process that results in ‘human imprinting’ of lions (and other cats). These animals are mostly not orphans and can never be returned to the wild. When too old to be handled, they are returned to the farmers as breeding stock or are sold online to trophy hunters. Many others are killed for the Asian lion bone trade.


YES, that cute cub has been bred for the bullet.

The question to ask “where do all these cubs come from and where do they end up”?

It’s also disappointing to see Dr Chris Brown voice his concerns about canned hunting, telling us that the cub he was handling shouldn’t be “petted” while he does precisely that: what these celebrities and Network Ten are endorsing is irresponsible and is directly fuelling the trade of exploitation of endangered animals.

Kirsty Wilson, Sydney Publicity Manager for Network Ten said the lion cub that appeared on the program came from Letaba River Lodge Eco Park. What a misnomer to be calling themselves an Eco Park; what is ecologically sound about breeding predators to be habituated and exploited first for human contact and then for a hunting bullet? Dr Chris Brown stated that the cub was part of a breeding program as white lions are rare – what he doesn’t mention is that this cub will never live a free life in the wild, thanks to his handling of it, and that it therefore cannot contribute to stabilising populations in white lions’ endemic homeland of Timbavati, several hundred kilometres from its breeding facility.  White lions are highly prized by hunters, private collectors, zoos and circuses around the world because of this rarity he speaks of. Where does Dr Brown think these animals destined to be trophies on someone’s wall come from? By handling cubs, this programme and Dr Brown, Shane Warne, Jo Beth Taylor, Val Lehman are endorsing the cycle of exploitation these animals face.

The Australian government took global leadership by banning the importation of lion trophies and body parts (months before the death of Cecil) as a direct response to the cruel and barbaric industry of canned hunting, a global first. Conservationists, lion ecologists and predator scientists have been desperately campaigning the South African Government to regulate the enormous number of captive lions and the increasing business of captive breeding which is now spreading to other countries. Is it too much to expect that at the very least, Australian networks and ‘celebrities’ follow the Australian government’s responsible lead?

And for anyone who’s in doubt, watch the feature documentary Blood Lions. It is an explosive film that lifts the lid off the predator breeding industry and their murky array of exploitative commercial activities focussed on wild animals. What happens when it’s discovered that the cub you have raised as a volunteer or petted as a visitor or ‘celebrity’ ends up as a trophy or it’s bones sold to Asia for the lion bone trade?

To put a stop to these horrific practises, when travelling in South Africa or any place that has captive wild animals, please think before engaging. Resist the urge to handle, cuddle, bottle feed, play, walk or volunteer at places claiming to be doing conservation work if they have animals in cages. Much needed conservation dollars are being channelled by these unscrupulous operators – all part of the conservation con.

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CACH’s official withdrawal

Please be advised that CACH (Campaign Against Canned Hunting) hereby withdraws from any involvement with the production of Network Ten’s reality TV program “I’m a Celebrity, get me out of here”. In particular, we wish to remove ourselves from your list of potential recipients of prize money. We were very happy to hear that Dean Geyer selected CACH has his charity of choice but we cannot endorse a program that sends out a wrong message to the public – that cub petting is OK.

Our concerns were raised after watching Episode 10, where Jo Beth was participating in the “foot fetish” challenge which involved using a 5 week old white lion cub. Dr Chris Brown shared that the cub was abandoned by it’s mother and that the other cubs had died and it was part of a breeding program due to white lions being critically endangered. He mentioned that it wasn’t part of the canned hunting industry.

It would seem that Network Ten has been duped by the same story told to thousands of gullible tourists and volunteers. Lion farmers/captive lion breeders are astute to hide the ultimate fate of their alternative livestock – canned hunting. This is because cub petting/lion walks etc are such a profitable spin-off from the main purpose:- that of rearing lions to huntable size.

Kirsty Wilson, Sydney Publicity Manager, Network Ten properly advised us that the cub came from Letaba River Lodge Eco Park, SPCA assessed.

Letaba is a commercial breeding operation whose breeding activities have no conservation value.  None of their lions will ever be released back to the wild as part of a natural functioning ecosystem.

The reference to ‘SPCA assessed’ is typical of lion farmers’ public relations.  The NSPCA has no authority to assess for ethics or for involvement in canned hunting.  All the NSPCA can do is to inspect the facility to check that basic animal welfare is being observed; that the water in the camps is clean, permit conditions are being complied with, and such.

Dr Brown and/or the producers need to do their homework before endorsing activities that send such an irresponsible message. White lions are highly prized by hunters, private collectors, zoos and circuses around the world because of this rarity he speaks about. Where does he think these animals come from or end up? By handling cubs, this program and Dr Brown are endorsing the cycle of exploitation these animals face, and undermining our work.

CACH has been internationally recognised for its work in educating the tourism industry not to support any facility that offers cub petting, because of the link between cub petting and canned hunting. You can surely imagine how your program is subversive of the campaign to ban canned lion hunting.

Australia banned the importation of lion trophies and body parts (months before the death of Cecil) as a direct response to the cruel and barbaric industry of canned hunting, a global first.  Is it too much to expect that at the very least, our networks and ‘celebrities’ follow our government’s responsible lead?

Yours faithfully

Chris Mercer and Linda Park, Directors

Campaign Against Canned Hunting, South Africa



I’m A Celebrity And I’ve Been Duped

Africa’s lions require urgent attention. It’s estimated that as few as 20,000 are left in the wild, breeding them in cages and confined areas as happens in South Africa is not part of the solution as there is absolutely no conservation value.

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Network Ten’s popular Australian TV show “I’m a celebrity, get me out of here” are running a programme that includes irresponsible scenes exploiting wildlife including a 5 week old white lion cub.

Have they been duped into believing that the lion cub they used had been abandoned by it’s mother? Apparently. The production team had been told that the other two cubs had died, one drowned. Are they simply being grossly irresponsible in pursuit of viewer ratings?

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Photo Ian Michler

South Africa believes that lions should be taken off the threatened list and this is due to the enormous number of predators in captivity. Canned hunting farms and captive breeders have around 8000 lions in approximately 200 farms. According to the recent statement from the African Lion Working Group (ALWG) posted on the Blood Lions website, “The estimated 8,000 lions in South Africa currently being maintained and bred on game farms as part of this industry should not be included in any assessments of the current status of wild lions. Captive breeding of lions for sport hunting, hunting of captive-bred lion and the associated cub petting industry are not conservation tools.”   

These big cats face enormous pressures as lionesses are treated like breeding machines, cubs removed a few days or weeks after birth which then forces her back into estrus. The cubs are rented out to tourist attractions for “pay and play” or where volunteers get the opportunity to raise these “orphaned” cubs believing they are contributing to CONservation efforts. But as the ALWG says, nothing could be further from the truth.

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It’s also disappointing to see Dr Chris Brown voice his concerns about canned hunting, telling us that the cub he was handling shouldn’t be “petted” yet celebrity Jo Beth was feeling this baby with her feet and also got to handle it. A 5 week old baby!  What these celebrities and Network Ten are doing is irresponsible. Baby crocs with their jaws tied shut?! What message does this send to their viewers?

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We’ve been told that the lion cub that appeared on the program came from Letaba River Lodge Eco Park. What a misnomer to be calling themselves an Eco Park; what is ecologically sound about breeding predators to be habituated and exploited? Dr Chris Brown stated that the cub was part of a breeding program as white lions are rare but what benefit does this cub offer wild lion populations who are endemic to the Timbavati area?

Dr Brown and the producers needs to do thorough research before they participate in activities that send an irresponsible message. If they had, they would have known that white lions are highly prized by hunters, private collectors, zoos and circuses around the world because of this rarity he speaks about. Where does he think these animals come from and end up? By handling cubs, this programme and Dr Brown are endorsing the cycle of exploitation these animals face.

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Australia banned the importation of lion trophies and body parts (months before the death of Cecil) as a direct response to the cruel and barbaric industry of canned hunting, a global first. Conservationists, lion ecologists and predator scientists have been desperately campaigning the South African Government to regulate the enormous number of captive lions and the increasing business of captive breeding which is now spreading to other countries. Is it too much to expect that at the very least, Australian networks and ‘celebrities’ follow the government’s responsible lead?

And for anyone who’s in doubt, watch the feature documentary Blood Lions.

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It is an explosive film that lifts the lid on the predator breeding industry and their murky array of exploitative commercial activities. What happens when it’s discovered that the cub you have raised as a volunteer or petted as a visitor or ‘celebrity’ ends up as a trophy or it’s bones sold to Asia for the lion bone trade?

It’s very disappointing that Network Ten didn’t do their research given that celebrity Dean Geyer has made Campaign Against Canned Hunting his designated charity.

To put a stop to these horrific practises, when travelling in South Africa or any place that has captive animals, please think before engaging. Resist the urge to handle, cuddle, bottle feed, play, walk or volunteer. Much needed conservation dollars are being channeled by these unscrupulous operators – all part of the conservation con.

Blood Lions Australian Tour

Blood Lions proudly partnered with us for the first international screening, choosing Australia first due to the recent ban on lion trophies. Australia has set the standard by responding to the cruel and barbaric industry of captive breeding and canned hunting by banning all lion imports.


Exclusive screening after Global March for Lions – Melbourne on April 2, 2016 at Cinema Nova, Lygon Street, Carlton at 2.30pm.


Blood Lions premiered at the Durban International Film Festival in July to a sell out crowd (500 seats) receiving a standing ovation.
Pippa Hankinson (Producer) and Ian Michler (lead role) have worked for years creating this film, facing not only financial pressure, but putting their lives (and the film crew) at risk. The entire Blood Lions team were very excited after a nervous lead up, knowing that the explosive film would blow the lid off the industry. More recently, the film has been screened via PBS and shown on Discovery Channel throughout the world.


The film crew on stage after the premier of Blood Lions.

The premier was attended by Botswana’s Environment Minister and his wife, and many other special guests including members of the IFP.

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Botswana Environment Minister, Hon Tshekedi Khama II and his wife with Donalea Patman.

At the second screening CEO and President of PHASA (Professional Hunters Assoc of Sth Africa) were in the audience and even with Ian Michler’s invitation, they didn’t engage in the Q&A. Ian made it known that Donalea was in the audience and what For the Love of Wildlife had achieved in Australia.

Immediately following, PHASA connected with the Blood Lions crew for intense discussion. A public statement about the need to address the concerns raised in the film in regard to lion hunting went out the following day. Ian expressed how it had been years of wanting to engage PHASA and now the film was now playing it’s part in initiating change.



The first screening in Australia was held at Luna on SX in Fremantle held on the 1st September and was a rush start due to Ian Michler’s plane being delayed – but we made it in the end! Pippa Hankinson (Producer) had to cancel last minute as contractual and legal commitment to getting the PBS deal in the US was imperative and required further work. She was very upset and not being at the first international screening and sent her sincere apologies and we certainly missed her!


Melissa Parke MP, Donalea Patman and Ian Michler before the Fremantle screening.

Melissa Parke MP attended and participated in the Q&A, showing particular interest in addressing the lion bone trade through Asia. Katrina Love, Animal Justice Party and many others engaged enthusiastically with a few from the audience realising they had inadvertently participated in the industry. The expression people have when they realise that what they’ve done – thinking they were contributing to conservation to find out that they were part of the cycle of canned hunting.


Very grateful to Charlotte and Cecil from Luna on SX who were incredible in sharing the film via their networks and really helped on the night.


Screening was at UTS and after some initial technical difficulties, we had a brilliant night…thank you Bryan Seymour for stepping in when it counted most!

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Bryan Seymour, Channel 7 with Donalea Patman and Ian Michler.



Ace Bourke with fans!

Ace Bourke (Christian the Lion fame), Bryan Seymour (Channel 7), relatives of both Ian Michler and Pippa Hankinson, Jeroen Van Kernebeek (FOUR PAWS), Jan McGlashan (who assisted Pippa with transcripts), Paul De Villiers amongst representatives from Greenpeace, Sydney Zoo, RSPCA, to name a few.  Very interesting panel discussion with Matthew Collis (IFAW) and Hon. Mark Pearson, Animal Justice Party.


Hon Mark Pearson (Animal Justice Party), Ian Michler and Matthew Collis (IFAW).

Great to have so much support with some flying in from all over the country. Thank you to all who donated including Alison Lee Ruby who made it despite being unwell.


Melbourne was a cold and blustery night but still a fabulous turnout. Engaging in panel discussion was Bruce Poon, Vic Convenor Animal Justice Party and Nichola Donovan BA, LLB, LLM Animal Rights Lawyer.


Ian Michler, Bruce Poon (Animal Justice Party VIC) and Nicola Donovan, Animal Rights Lawyer during the panel discussion.


The crowd before screening at Melbourne University.

Phil and Trix Wollen (Kindness Trust), Sean Wilmore (The Thin Green Line), Edward Bourke (Saving the Lion), Laurie Levy (Coalition Against Duck Shooting) and many other friends and colleagues. Very generous donations from Michelle Webb, the Australian Sweet Company, Stephen Powell and Peloton Design.


Laurie Levy (Coalition Against Duck Shooting), Sean Wilmore (The Thin Green Line), Donalea Patman and Ian Michler at the Melbourne screening.

Thanks to University of Melbourne Animal Protection Society and Human Rights & Animal Ethics Research Unit for their very generous help.

Parliament House, Canberra

Screening at Parliament was the highlight for Ian Michler with invited guests and an opportunity to thank Minister Hunt in person.

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Senator Lee Rhiannon with Minister Greg Hunt in discussion with Ian Michler and Donalea Patman.

Unfortunately Jason Wood MP was away overseas on business, leaving Senator Lee Rhiannon and her staff to host us, but a real delight to know that this issue has brought the Greens, Liberals and Labor together. Attended by members of parliament, Environment Department staff, Heather Neil (CEO, RSPCA) and many from Canberra office of the RSPCA, Roderick Campbell (author Ecolarge) and colleagues from Australia Institute, Matthew Colliss (IFAW) and many invited guests and colleagues.

Greg Hunt gave a heartfelt speech in the committee room before the screening which left both Donalea and Ian a little lost for words! Senator Rhiannon was also very kind with her introduction.

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We had a fun time getting through security with Ian not having any ID and having to google him on a smartphone to show security who he was (who doesn’t travel with a drivers license!!!)

Before the screening a quick interview on ABC Radio with Ian discussing issues on air with hunters, who after he presented the facts, the hunters backed down and agreed with Ian.

Members of the Shooters & Fishers Party, Senator David Leyonhjelm and heads of hunting groups were invited as guests to attend screenings. Senator Leyonhjelm responded that we should see his talk on canned hunting that he presented to the Senate on 12 August – we told him we had and that’s why he was invited (failed to present any facts), his was response was that we were “silly”.  No other replies. 

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Melissa Parke MP after the Parliamentary screening with Economist Roderick Campbell, Ian Michler and Donalea Patman.

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A very special thanks to Claire and Nathan of Marini Ferlazzo who donated White Lioness artwork to be auctioned at each event and one which was gifted to Minister Hunt. To Kym Illman who offered generous discounts for his new photography book and donated a book for the Perth event. Donna and her mum from The Australian Sweet Co for donating black aniseed balls. To all of you who have assisted in anyway whether that be helping sell merchandise at screenings, spreading the word, posting on social media, handing out flyers, for keeping us sane!!! Deeply appreciate the love and support and together we will get this industry banned.

White Lioness

White Lioness by Nathan Ferlazzo

Changing the Landscape for Africa’s Lions

Canadian freelance journalist Jacalyn Beales features the following blog on her page “Out of Wilderness”.


Donalea Patman, Founder of Australian-based NPO and registered charity For the Love of Wildlife, stops by out of wilderness to discuss her crucial role in Australia’s world-renowned stand against lion exploitation and how she first got started advocating for Africa’s lions. 

The past 18 months have been remarkable. As most would know, I campaigned my local MP to create a global first. Australia announced in March, 2015 that it would ban the importation of lion trophies and body parts…well before the death of Cecil. France has recently done the same.

How this came about is because I believed and trusted my guidance. Scientists will scoff, trophy hunters will tell you I’m crazy, politicians will say I’m not a normal activist…and they’re right. I don’t fit any particular mold.

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Donalea Patman, pictured here MCing the event which saw Australia’s Environmental Minister, Greg Hunt, announcing the immediate ban on lion trophies & body parts (Federation Square, Melbourne – March, 2015)

I’ve always deeply loved and spoken up for nature and animals. Even as a little girl, while on a family holiday off the Western Australian coast, my father and his friend decided to ride the turtles. I wept and told them that they were “interfering with nature.” I was born with an innate sense of justice and I’ve been fierce in that.

“A spiritual traveller, questing for deeper meaning and purpose, but never dreaming I’d find myself working on wildlife issues, assisting the Australian Government. ”

What ignited my heart and a love for Africa was attending a workshop at the Global White Lion Protection Trust in Timbavati, South Africa – hosted by Linda Tucker, the Trust’s founder, and Andrew Harvey, author and Sacred Activist teacher. The first morning out we surprised the Royal Pride, the founding family of white lions of this project; they sat bolt upright and engaged. I was absolutely overwhelmed by the immense beauty and presence of these magnificent white lions. I’d never seen nor imagined anything like it. But what was pivotal was that one of the young males locked eyes with me and I was pierced through, my heart broken wide open.

Back at camp, Linda talked about the threats facing Africa’s lions, and specifically white lions, as they are targeted by trophy hunters, obviously because of their stunning beauty and high trophy value. She also described the horrors of canned hunting (which I’d never heard of) and to say that I was white with rage is to put it lightly. In my disgust and despair, Andrew Harvey looked at me and said something along the lines of, “Now that you’ve been brought to your knees by your righteous indignation, your rage, your disbelief and sorrow, I want you to take that heartbreak and turn it into passionate action fuelled and informed by your heart.”




I returned to Australia, sharing what I knew about the plight of Africa’s lions, signing petitions and the like. [In] December, 2012 (and many know the significance of that date) I was again at the Global White Lion Trust for a gathering of people from around the world, including Pippa Hankinson – her history in conservation, specifically lions, led her to produce the recently released film on canned hunting, Blood Lions. We left Timbavati knowing we had to do more and get very serious about it.

“On these early trips it became blatantly obvious that Africa, and more specifically her wildlife, is under siege as wildlife is intensely commodified. I needed to contribute, I needed to do something! ”

I’ve attended workshops with people like Anna Breytenbach (interspecies communication), Jon Young (deep nature connection), Alwyn Myberg (bird language) and one thing is for sure, we better well start listening (deeply) to nature if we’re to stop the race to extinction.

Should conservation be the responsibility of conservationists only, and if so, why are so many species facing extinction? Is it the responsibility of scientists, activists, ecologists or governments? Whilst all are absolutely necessary, and I am so very grateful to those that work in these incredibly confronting and challenging fields, I accomplished something that, even in the week leading up to the announcement, was declared impossible.

I have a background in design, and a few years back attended a government led workshop where designers were engaged by big business. Creatives see what others don’t – musicians, poets, writers, artists…we view the world differently. Bring those eyes into an organization or a problem and hey, opportunities, possibilities, ideas are uncovered which are often overlooked because everyone is busy getting the day to day done.

I’m testament that the old rules of engagement don’t necessarily apply. We need creative partnerships – to think outside the usual constructs and safe zones if we’re to manifest radical, passionate action which cuts through old limitations and just maybe, create a bit of magic. We don’t have time for further reporting or consultation – it’s been done to death and we’re losing our wildlife because of the human, bureaucratic process.

I navigated the work with the Federal Government as it presented – no training or experience in strategy, conservation or policy and certainly no attachment to outcome, just being courageous and being prepared to learn along the way. I know I was guided once Icompletely committed to the process and I was blessed to have Ian Michler (Blood Lions) and Pippa Hankinson mentor me.

A great initiative that is currently brewing is listing lions as a World Heritage Species – it’s brilliant and necessary. But of course, we are in this predicament because we haven’t been able to stay connected to nature; we have forgotten that, intrinsically, we are part of the web of life.

Wildlife belongs to the planet, not to any government, individual, organization, corporate or group – animals have a right to exist, on their ancestral or endemic homelands as part of their specific ecosystems and the greater ecology. Commoditising wildlife will be our undoing.

Moving species to other countries to save them, to live in captivity, is not conservation, it’s desperation. In certain instances, it’s a bid to use an old paradigm to mask lucrative wildlife trade. We’re on dangerous ground when we continue to mess with the natural order of things. It’s time to drop our arrogance and allow nature to inform us, and we must return to our rightful place as guardians – not gods.

We are racing extinction and the truth is, if the animals go, so do we. What I ask myself everyday is “what am I going to do about it?” We all having something unique and practical to contribute.

“I don’t know how to save the world. I don’t have the answers or THE answer. I hold no secret knowledge as to how to fix the mistakes of generations past and present. I only know that without compassion and respect for all of Earth’s inhabitants, none of us will survive, nor will we deserve to. ”

— Leonard Peltier


For the Love of Wildlife invites you on our 2016 African Tour that invigorates your relationship with the living earth and your wild soul. Stella Horgan, Ruth Underwood and Donalea Patman will guide a conscious safari, different from other tours, as with our approach to and experience in nature, we believe in deep immersion and even deeper respect; that as we are humble, nature reveals herself. This is not about watching wildlife through the lens of a camera, or from afar: we want you to feel her under your skin. To experience the subtleties and patterns, to be a sacred witness to whatever is revealed, to be absolutely, exhilaratingly present.

For further information on the African expedition, please get in touch with For the Love of Wildlife by sending your inquiry to:

African Tour May 2016

For the Love of Wildlife invites you on an African expedition to invigorate your relationship with the living earth and your wild soul.

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The ancient stones of Adam’s Calendar

Our 12 day South African journey embarks from Johannesburg to the rolling hills of Mpumalanga Province and Adam’s Calendar, a 35,000 year old site marked by monolithic rocks aligned to the stars and guarded by free roaming wild horses. Here we prepare for entry into the animal and natural kingdom.

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What makes this Conscious Safari different from others tours is our approach to and experience in nature. We believe in deep immersion and even deeper respect, that as we are humble nature reveals herself. This is not about watching wildlife through the lens of a camera, or from afar: we want you to feel her under your skin. To experience the subtleties and patterns, to be a sacred witness to whatever is revealed, to be absolutely, exhilaratingly present.

We are concerned about the plight of the natural world, hence our activist work: given all of our brilliant human talents and sense of superiority as a species we have destroyed key aspects of the very earth that supports us. We believe that it is time to engage our full capacity as humans and fire our passionate hearts for the living earth. We also seek to extend our activism to joyfulness rather than devastation, and to claim a sense of power from our vulnerable and authentic selves to slip into delight and wonder at our world.

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Our wish for you, our guest, is that you leave the safari with a profound and vivid connection to nature and a deepened connection to your authentic, wise self that enables expression and a joyful, courageous relationship with life.

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This magical tour provides an opportunity to experience the unbridled power, generosity and wisdom of wildlife, the wildness that opens our hearts with its vulnerability and mystery. We journey quietly with our hearts open to listen to and witness the animals and nature, to receive what is offered to us.

Our journey takes us to the Kruger National Park, a nature reserve bigger than the country of Israel, home to herds of dozens of elephants and all the iconic animals of the pristine indigenous African bush. This is where we will work with interspecies communication and bird language tools, deep passions of all facilitators.

From Kruger we travel to the third largest canyon in the world, the Blyde River Canyon in Limpopo Province, the northern ranges of the mighty Drakensberg Mountains, a primal, powerful world of rivers, awe inspiring peaks and magnificent scenery and bird life.

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Our expedition concludes in the world famous wilderness of Timbavati at the Global White Lion Protection Trust, home of the iconic and sacred White Lions. A highlight of our journey (after our solid preparation) will be spending time with the white lions of Timbavati at the Global White Lion Protection Trust, which is not open to the general public.

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These incredible beings are considered sacred by many cultures and holy people and present astonishing, unique encounters. Many indigenous people believe that the arrival of the white animals is significant and prophetic. Being on the sacred heartland of Tsau in Timbavati, the ancestral homeland of the white lion is a compelling and a once in a lifetime experience, made possible by sacred activists Linda Tucker, who was given the mantle Keeper of the White Lions by Shangaan Lion Queen Maria Khosa, and Jason Turner, lion ecologist who have both dedicated their lives to protecting these endangered animals.

Proceeds of this expedition go to fund For the Love of Wildlife’s work, the non profit organisation responsible for the Australian government’s decision to ban the importation of lion trophies and body parts, in a bid to stem traffic in endangered species and to bring an end to canned hunting, as told by the film Blood Lions which FLOW partnered in.  Donalea Patman is the founder and director of FLOW, one the leading sacred activists in the world.

Tour begins 18 May, 2016. 

Early bird discount applies for bookings confirmed before end of February. 

Group numbers are limited to maintain the integrity and quality of the experience. 

For further information, pricing and itinerary please contact us

Itinerary and pricing



Dlea for Web

Donalea Patman

Having travelled throughout her life the most defining and memorable moments have always involved animals. A passionate advocate for sentient beings, she has always held a deep love of nature.

A lifetime interest and study of personal development and spirituality lead to her involvement in Sacred Activism. Donalea launched For the Love of Wildlife to create a professional platform to campaign the plight of animals in Africa, Australia and New Zealand, raising awareness of the destructive forces annihilating the natural world. Her fascination with interspecies communication has lead her to participate in workshops with Anna Breytenbach, Alwyn Myberg, Craig Foster and most recently Jon Young, 8 Shields.


Stella Pilot

Stella Horgan is a lifelong traveller and lover of wilderness who came home to her native South Africa in 2011 after twelve years in Australia, where she ran a private practice specialising in coaching, psychotherapy, workshop facilitation and project management.

In 2013 she established NPO Zingela Ulwazi – Hunt for Wisdom, whose mission is to deliver critical information to rural South Africans with the objective to improve lives and custodianship of nature and wilderness. Stella lives in the Blyde River Canyon and is entirely in love with nature and committed to reclaiming land for wilderness. She is a meditator, mystic, artist and sacred activist.



Ruth Underwood

Ruth Underwood  is a mystic, spiritual teacher and retreat facilitator who spent her early years living in mostly rural settings in Uganda and South Africa where her deep sense of connection to the soul of Africa was formed. She has spent most of her career working with non-profits in South Africa, and leads sacred retreats in South Africa,  Egypt and India.  Ruth has a particular connection with the Nilotic meridian and all the sites along it, and on these retreats, shares her love for the heart of Mother Africa and her mysteries.



To book your flights, travel insurance (compulsory), additional accommodation, stopovers or any other pre or post FLOW program travel, our recommended travel agent is Cassandra at Better World Travel. Not only can she take the stress out of your trip planning, but Cassandra has also offered to donate 5% of the cost of your travel insurance policy to FLOW.

Contact details are:

Cassandra Newbold, Specialist Ethical Travel Consultant
0449 234 074

IFAW honours Australians for commitment to lion conservation in Africa

Award Pic 1

Donalea Patman, Founder of For the Love of Wildlife with the award presented by Matthew Collis, IFAW and Jason Wood MP with his daughter Jasmine.

IFAW honors Australians for commitment to lion conservation in Africa 

by Simon Bloch, Durban

Two Australians have been honoured by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) for their commitment to lion conservation.

In a ceremony Down Under yesterday (Tuesday) Donalea Patman, founder of For the Love of Wildlife, an Australian NGO, and Jason Wood, Federal MP for La Trobe,  were lauded for their campaign to end South Africa’s legal practice of hunting captive-raised lions (known as canned hunting).

In February 2015, Australian Environment minister Greg Hunt enacted legislation prohibiting the import of lion trophies and their body parts to Australia.

This was four months before American dentist and cross-bow hunter Walter James Palmer sparked international outrage when he killed Zimbabwe’s wildlife icon, Cecil the Lion.

Actual Award 1

Presenting their IFAW Policy and Advocacy Animal Heroes awards, Mathew Collis, IFAW’s organisation’s Campaigns and Policy manager, said:

“Donalea worked tirelessly with her local MP, Jason Wood, to raise awareness about trophy hunters bringing the body parts of lions into Australia.

“With the help of internationally respected conservationist and film–maker Ian Michler (Blood Lions) Donalea and Jason were the driving force behind the federal government’s historic decision to ban the import of lion trophies.

“The ban reflects the Australian public’s abhorrence of canned hunting in which lions raised in captivity are hunted with no fair chance of escape. By banning the importation of lion trophies, Australia is no longer complicit in the cruelty of canned hunting” he added.

Award Dlea

Patman said she was humbled to have been recognised by IFAW.

“I don’t do my work for awards, I do it because I believe Africa’s wildlife is under siege. I’m incredibly honoured” she said.

“Miss Patman has undertaken remarkable work to protect endangered wildlife, and I applaud her commitment” Jason Wood said.

France follows Australia in banning lion trophies

Despite the horror that France has faced in the past week, today Segolene Royal, Minister of Environment in France announced the immediate ban on import permits of lion trophies and body parts. Following Australia’s visionary and courageous lead, announced by Environment Minister, Greg Hunt in March 2015 (months before the killing of Cecil) France is the second country to step up.

EU Meetings

From the left: Dr Ilaria di Silvestre, Dr Pieter Kat (LionAid), Ian Michler (lead role Blood Lions and investigative journalist) and Gael de-Rotalier

Ian Michler with colleagues including Pieter Kat, LionAid briefed and held discussions with members of the EU and screened the explosive movie Blood Lions.

Minister Hunt pledged to take it up with the EU at the screening held in Parliament House, Canberra in September. He also met with members of LionAid in the UK weeks prior to this announcement. Pieter Kat and Christine Macsween along with LionAid patron John Rendall briefed the Minister about the critical urgency facing Africa’s lions, over and above captive breeding and canned hunting.

Greg Hunt LionAid

From the left: Dr Pieter Kat, The Hon. Greg Hunt, Chris Macsween and John Rendall

The following is from LionAid’s website dated 18 November, 2015:

Through the Brigitte Bardot Foundation, we yesterday heard that Segolene Royal, Minister of Environment in France issued a letter stating that “I have instructed my services to no longer issue import permits for lion hunting trophies”.
This is excellent news, as France ranks high among the EU Member States for the import of such trophies.
Minister Royal also mentioned that she would consult with other EU Member State Environment Ministers to impose stricter rules on the import of all hunting trophies.
We applaud Minister Royal for this timely decision, and hope that this will precipitate like-minded decisions from many other EU Member States. 

More positive news on the very same day, PHASA (Professional Hunters Association of Sth Africa) AGM has fantastic results.

At the PHASA Convention held at Protea Hotel Ranch Resort: Canned lion breeders outvoted 147 to 103, after a very emotional and draining AGM.

Motion passed that PHASA disassociates with the captive-bred lion industry until such time that they can convince PHASA and the IUCN that the practice is beneficial to lion conservation (this won’t ever happen, so it looks like it’s the end for them!).

Thanks to Ian Michler (lead role) and Phillipa Hankinson (producer) for the Blood Lions documentary, which made such a big difference, along with progressive PHs such as Stewart Dorrington and, who did the right thing.

The CEO and President of PHASA attended the second night’s screening of Blood Lions in Durban when it was premiered at the Durban International Film Festival in July 2015.




The Objects:

  • establishing and maintaining the Public Fund for receiving gifts and donations to pursue the Company’s Objects;
  • the protection and enhancement of the natural environment, which include habitat reclamation and restoration;
  • ensuring that all fauna remains as diverse as possible and reducing the risk of extinctions as aligned with the principles of biodiversity conservation;
  • raising and effectively directing funds towards exposing wildlife trafficking and wildlife crimes throughout the world;
  • promoting, motivating and educating the community to take action to prevent wildlife trafficking and wildlife crimes;
  • promoting, motivating and educating the community about ethical travel as it relates to the destruction of the natural environment;
  • participating with others, globally, for solutions-based concepts protecting wildlife;
  • participating with others, globally, for solutions-based concepts in exposing wildlife trafficking and wildlife crimes;
  • doing all other things as may be incidental and ancillary to the attainment of these Objects including leadership training and courses promoting ‘ecological intelligence’; and
  • exercising any powers that the Company has by having the legal capacity of a natural person, including by performing any act or function which it is authorised or required to do by any law.

What our supporters have to say…

Sen Rhiannon Dlea Ian Hunt Roderick


Australia’s Environment Minister, Liberal Party

Minister Hunt delivered the following speech in Parliament on 8 September 2015 prior to the screening of Blood Lions. In front of invited guests, members of parliament, staff and colleagues both Donalea Patman and Ian Michler were touched my the Minister’s heartfelt words. Those attending included Senator Lee Rhiannon, Roderick Campbell (author Ecolarge), Matthew Collis (IFAW), Heather Neil (CEO RSPCA Australia) amongst many others.

8-9-15 Hunt- Remarks - Parliament House_Page_1 8-9-15 Hunt- Remarks - Parliament House_Page_2




Author, Mystic, Teacher, Founder of Sacred Activism

As everyone now knows the wildlife of our beautiful earth is now tragically endangered and hundreds of species are vanishing every month in the orgy of greed and destruction that our civilisation is seemingly addicted to. This is a tragedy of immense proportion which every decent person and everyone that has ever responded to the beauty of an animal or the love of a pet must feel as a permanent ache in their heart.

This would be awful enough to warrant massive action on a massive scale, however, the great sages of humanity and the shamans of all indigenous traditions have also warned us that by endangering the wildlife of creation, we also endanger the wild life inside ourselves, that natural, instinctual, unfettered passion for life and energy of survival and celebration that are amongst our most precious gifts.

This foundation For the love of Wildlife, started by Donalea Patman, is one I support with the whole force of the global movement of sacred activism behind it. For I know that it is from the divine animal side of us that we find the passion to stand up for compassion and justice and I know too that if we continue to savagely disrespect and ravage creation and its creatures we will unleash unstoppable forces both inside and outside us that will ensure our destruction. I pray that all people of goodwill, power and wealth will support the humble and heroic work of this foundation and so help humanity come into this unity with its inner and outer world.

Andrew Harvey
Institute of Sacred Activism
Author – The Hope, Radical Passion


Michler 3


Internationally Respected Conservationist, Investigative Journalist, Safari Guide

I have got to know and work with Donalea Patman from For the Love of Wildlife (FLOW) over the last 18 months through a mutual friend and colleague. This came about after Donalea viewed a short fundraising promotional clip for an upcoming documentary on predator breeding and canned hunting in South Africa. Shocked and outraged, she contacted Jason Wood, her local Member of Parliament to view the footage. Since that day, she and Jason have become an integral part of the campaign to have these horrific practices closed down. And history now shows the fruits of their passionate and dedicated involvement; on the 13th March, the Australian government became the first country to take a stand by banning the import of all lion body parts into Australia. For this we need to thank Minister Greg Hunt, Jason Wood MP, Stephan Hartley and Donalea as well as the Australian people who supported them in their endeavours.

To get a full picture of how important this move has been, I need to give some background.

Over the last 25 years, my work across 20 African countries has seen me become immersed in the ecotourism, conservation and wildlife challenges the continent faces. This work has ranged from managing numerous different safari camps and community concessions to owning my own as well as acting as a professional safari guide on untold trips to every destination imaginable, and to my more recent exploits as an environmental photo-journalist and ecotourism consultant.

During this period, the land-use options we use to manage Africa’s protected areas have been one of the core issues to stay with me. In short, this involves the role of trophy hunting: does the killing of large numbers of wild animals have a role to play as a conservation or management tool protecting biodiversity, or as some would have it, the far simpler question; in this day and age, is trophy hunting appropriate behaviour. These questions take on greater relevance with the knowledge that photographic ecotourism plays a far more significant and sustainable role across the continent.

This debate will become more intense in the coming years, especially as science increasingly exposes our close relationship with all other species and the impacts we are having on the planet. However, there is one component to the trophy hunting debate that demands immediate attention and action; the intensive breeding of wild animals under agricultural conditions to be killed in confined areas by trophy hunters.

These practices are particularly prevalent in South Africa where today about 200 facilities are holding anywhere between 6 000 and 8 000 predators, mostly lions in cages or enclosed areas. And these animals will be used for a variety of revenue streams ranging from cub petting and walking with lions to canned hunting, the lion bone trade or traded out to other breeders and collectors.

I have been an outspoken critic of these practices for 15 years and have done this work by writing extensively on the practices, going undercover to get footage, doing untold public presentations and compiling reports for international NGO’s. And it’s all been done with the aim of bringing greater awareness to the general public, the wider conservation community and the government in South Africa with the hope of engineering change.

I must also point out that there have been numerous other individuals and organisations that have been working tirelessly with the same objectives in mind, and I have collaborated with many of them. But the harsh reality is that, barring a short period in 2005/6 when the then Sth African Minister of Environment gave a glimmer of hope that government was willing to try and shut the operations down, we have failed. The numbers tell this story: when I started my investigations in 1999, there was approximately 1 000 predators; by the time I did a comprehensive report in 2005, the numbers had increased to between 3 000 and 3 500 and now we have as many as 8 000 predators in captivity.

The first and only breakthrough we have had in trying to have these practices shutdown has come from the Australian government. And as mentioned, Donalea and FLOW have been instrumental in this momentous step. From the outset, she completely understood the arguments, their context and how important it was to fight this battle in a way that would influence decision-makers.

Her tireless and incisive approach has been a large factor in carrying this issue all the way to the Minister’s desk. On behalf of all of us who have been fighting these practices, not to mention the lions and other predators as well as untold other wild species being bred for the bullet, we owe Donalea a massive thank you.

Ian Michler
Invent Africa Safaris

Greg Brown’s love of wildlife

Greg Brown, one of Australia’s finest chefs has created great tasting granitas with real fruits. Simply add water and freeze!

He has been an international success story, with his restaurants being world class, ambassador for luxury items and his talents have been in demand worldwide.

Being a gourmet chef has always had its challenges. But being a gourmet chef diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is the reason behind this launch.

When Greg was first (mis) diagnosed many of his friends and colleagues thought he had hit the bottle and was a drunk…almost 10 years ago now.

MS does that, it affects the muscles and speech and so you physically wobble and slur. He’s had to fight to stay not only on top of his disease, but to retain his dignity and talent. Due to MS he’s had his businesses taken away from him, he was made a ward of the state (6 years to regain his independence), lost his antique and other rare collections, his family, his friends and hasn’t been able to work for many years. He was in Canberra, Australia when he had a fall, the police picked him up and put him in a cell for two days without his medication all because they didn’t believe he had MS and made the mistake (almost a fatal one) of not listening to him.

With MS it’s best you eat cold food so that your throat muscles stay tight making it easier to speak, eat and breathe. Greg quickly became bored with sucking on ice blocks and with his palette still finely attuned, he decided to embark on developing food for people not only with MS, but with disabilities in general.

Greg has wanted the emphasis to be on flavour using mostly all natural ingredients, that are simple and easy to make (making you the food hero). This range of granita mixes are made from 100% natural fruit. Simply add the granita mix to 600 ml of boiling water and freeze. Once frozen remove and let sit for a short while, stir through with a fork, ready to serve. The portion you don’t use just return to the freezer as granita last for months. It’s that easy!

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How has protecting wildlife become part of the project?

Greg Brown has always been connected to nature, having been raised on a farm, he is a man of the land. He remembers killing a small animal when he was a kid and that action has haunted him till today.

Greg resides in the beautiful forest of Sherbrooke, Mt Dandenong where he is surrounded by birds, wallabies, wombats and all sorts of wonderful creatures.

Sherbrooke Forest
Sherbrooke Forest

Early 2015 he met a woman at a local cafe and became interested in the work she was doing. Donalea Patman is the founder of For the Love of Wildlife which has been created to expose crimes against nature. The first campaign targeting the cruel and barbaric industry of captive breeding and canned hunting of African lions.

After watching the remarkable capacity of this small organisation to accomplish so much in the short period of time he’d known Donalea, Greg realised that Africa’s wildlife is under siege and wanted to be able to contribute in some way.

For the Love of Wildlife has been the catalyst in the Australian Federal Government banning the importation of lion trophies and body parts as a direct response to this barbaric industry…a global first.

Part proceeds of the sale of these granitas goes to supporting our work.

To order these five fabulous flavours, email – two packets (minimum order) $25, one packet of each is $50, two of each $90 and we’ll happily quote for any combination you’d like. Strawberry, raspberry, mango, blueberry and passion fruit…delicious! (Postage additional)


Greg Brown is one of Australia’s finest chefs.

Author of several books and a myriad of gastronomic awards, owning restaurants and a chain of bakeries, Greg Brown is internationally renowned.

Growing up on a farm in the Western districts of Victoria, Australia where he developed a deep love of the land and animals.

To finance his university study he worked for local restaurants learning to be a cook.

After graduating in psychology Greg realised his real calling was the food industry so he set off for Europe.

His career in gastronomy commenced training under the wing of acclaimed French chefs Raymond Blanc at the Manoir aux Quatre Saisons and Michel Roux at the Waterside Inn. Greg was also fortunate enough to study at Ecole Lenotre in Versailles famed for its Patisserie and Boulangerie (bakery).

Greg’s rigorous training in Europe led to a significant level of knowledge in the food and catering business.

Returning to Australia Greg opened ‘Paysan’, a restaurant that was awarded many accolades including the ‘Restaurant of the Year’ for two years running. His subsequent restaurant ‘Browns’ was also an instant success awarded the ‘Restaurant of the Year’ six months after opening!

Greg continued on with his success as a reputed chef by extending into pastries and breads through a chain of stores ‘Brown’s Bakers of Distinction’.

In early 2000, Greg was diagnosed with a mild form of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and over the next few years suffered a number of personal setbacks, including the loss of his businesses, separation from his family and the onset of the debilitating symptoms.

Although physical limitations have affected his body’s agility his mind, palate and intimate knowledge of ingredients are still working overtime to develop new recipes and mastering his existing 700+ recipes.

Greg Brown