Dr. Patarapol “Lotter” Maneeorn - Thailand's first wildlife veterinarian

Counter Wildlife Trafficking Champion for USAID Wildlife Asia. Dr. Patarapol is Thailand's first wildlife veterinarian for the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP), Dr Patarapol splits his time between the wilderness and the city.


Patarapol “Lotter” Maneeorn, Thailand’s highly respected and popular Wildlife Veterinarian. DNP's first ever wildlife veterinarian, appointed in 2007. As Thailand's first wildlife veterinarian for the Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife and Plant Conservation, Dr Patarapol splits his time between the wilderness and the city, where his main office is located.

Known on social media as Mor Lot, he gained popularity through his work with elephants. His most heroic act, which he is most celebrated for, was taming a wild elephant that had overheated and was reacting violently. A picture on Mor Lot's social media account shows him leading the elephant away, just as the animal looks ready to unleash an attack.

A sports lover, Dr Patarapol was his high school basketball team captain. He led his team to victory in regional competitions and was chosen to be part of the national squad as a junior.

After graduating in 2002, Dr Patarapol returned to Surin, known as the "land of the elephant". He landed a job immediately as a doctor at an elephant conservation centre. His university education trained him to work with large animals. Due to the scarce number of experts in his field, Dr Patarapol was in demand. Word of him spread to Khao Yai, where park officials asked him to work with injured elephants on a case-by-case basis. In 2004, he was hired as a temporary staff member at Khao Yai National Park.

Both Dr Patarapol's parents were government officials, developing his desire to do similar work. He was also inspired by a love of His Majesty the King. He thought the best way to show his gratitude for His Majesty's work for the country was to serve the public through the government. While working at Khao Yai, he began studying for the exams to become a government official.

After passing his exams, he was appointed as the DNP's first wildlife veterinarian in 2007, having successfully justified the position as a key step in Thai conservation efforts.


Dr Patarapol,Thailand's first wildlife veterinarian for the DNP.


After more than a decade of working with wild animals, Dr Patarapol declared he shouldn't be the only DNP veterinarian focused on conserving wildlife. He raised the issue with the DNP, asking them to recruit more veterinarians to cover the many neglected forest areas in Thailand.

Since his initial plea, Dr Patarapol has trained 40 new DNP veterinarians, with the numbers still growing. Still, he believes more could be done to tackle the remaining conservation challenges.


Source: Bangkok Post and Prestige