The poaching menace was dramatically reduced. The curator Robert Carcasson resigned in protest and Richard was left with the museum at his command which he like Louis before him used as a base of operations. It was from a casual aerial survey that he noted the potential of Lake Natron's shores for paleontology.
He is second of the three sons of the archaeologists Louis Leakey and Mary Leakey and is the younger brother of Colin Leakey. Richard Erskine Frere Leakey (born 19 December 1944 in Nairobi) is a politician paleoanthropologist and conservationist.