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Monday, February 28, 2011

Patricia Zerbini shares a passion for animals, especially elephants

Photographer Luke, an Asian elephant, poses for a photo with visitors at Two Tails Ranch in Williston. Patricia Zerbini, behind Luke in red, has been around exotic animals her entire life, and now runs Two Tails Ranch.
By Lashonda Stinson Curry - Staff writer - Gainesville Sun - Gainesville, Florida
February 12, 2011
Patricia Zerbini was never going to live a tame life. She grew up with a father named Tarzan, a trapeze artist mother and a backyard full of circus animals. By age 9, she was working with the lions and tigers in her father’s animal show. Then in 1979, five elephants joined the family’s exotic clan. Zerbini was always scared of elephants. As a small child, she witnessed someone get “smashed” by the large animal.
One night the elephants’ trainer left in the middle of the night and never returned. The next morning, Tarzan Zerbini approached his 14-year-old daughter.
“My dad came up to me and said ‘You’re going to be taking care of the elephants now,’” Zerbini recalls 32 years later. “When that opportunity came up I just said okay and walked in and did it.”And she never stopped.
Zerbini, 46, has spent more than 25 years of her life living with and caring for elephants at the Two Tails Ranch. Located on 10 acres in Williston, the ranch has been a training, medical, breeding and retirement facility for elephants and other exotic animals. More than 200 elephants have passed through the gates of the ranch, which she and her late husband, nationally-known elephant trainer Theodore Svertesky, started in 1984.
read more at:http://www.gainesville.com/

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