The 16-year-old Northern Irish environmentalist and author of Diary of a Naturalist recently became the youngest-ever recipient of the Wainwright Prize for UK nature writing; here, he discusses Seamus Heaney, reading by candlelight and his annual pilgrimage to Mordor.
Dara McAnulty is a 16-year-old autistic naturalist, conservationist and activist from Northern Ireland. After writing his online blog 'Naturalist Dara' for over three years and writing articles for many UK Wildlife NGOs, he published his debut book, Diary of a Young Naturalist which won the 2020 Wainwright Prize for Nature Writing, and was longlisted for the Baillie Gifford Prize - the youngest ever author to do so. Dara has featured on BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio Ulster, Springwatch, Countryfile, Homeground, BBC Bitesize, Observer, The Irish Times, the Irish Independent, Positive News and The Big Issue. Dara is a passionate and fervent campaigner for the natural world and dedicated fundraiser, volunteer and wildlife recorder. He is the youngest ever winner of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds Medal for services to conservation and nature. He is also the recipient of 10 Downing Street's 'Points of Light' and the winner of The Daily Mirror Young Animal Hero award. He lives with his family and Rosie the rescue-greyhound at the foot of the Mourne Mountains in County Down.
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