Greetings, fellow homo sapien sapiens! It’s great you found me and my fabulous tiger blog! My name is Robyn Barfoot and I have been fascinated by tigers since I was only 4 years old. It all started with my first exposure to tigers through the well-known Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus and a certain big cat trainer named Gunther Gebel-Williams. I was a young girl then and fell in love with the blond haired, very fit big cat trainer and the relationship he had with the cats under his care. After this my life has been filled with amazing opportunities and adventures, starting with obtaining a degree from Arizona State University in Wildlife Conservation Biology, entering the zoo world in 1997 and working my way up from Big Cat Keeper to General Curator of a zoo and traveling to India to work with tiger conservationists.
I’ve been fortunate enough to have hand raised over 30 tigers, worked with dozens more and am considered a big cat expert by the zoological community. I have met with many key tiger conservationists and government officials in my travels to India, including the Directors of the Sundarbans Tiger Biosphere, Project Tiger, Kaziranga National Park, Kanha Tiger Preserve and World Wildlife Fund-India. While traveling through India and immersing myself in the Indian culture, I came across 7 Bengal tigers in the wild and my heart was forever marked with the hope that we can save the tiger.
All along the way, the tiger has been my passion, my strength and the avenue in which I feel that I can have an impact on the world around us. My goal is to empower others to take action and help make a difference in a tiger’s life. This action can be simply learning more about tigers, starting a discussion about them or donating to an organization that is trying to save the tiger. It is a simple goal but one that can have a substantial effect.
Thank you for embarking on this journey with me which will take you through the lives of the many tigers I have encountered, the ups and downs of tiger conservation, tigers in Eastern and Western cultures, and the shear power of all that is the TIGER. I hope that by reading about my wild adventures, you become more engaged in tiger preservation and are motivated to one day create your tiger own experiences! (But remember, safety first!)