Dara McAnulty: ‘I want to campaign for wonder, for the love of the natural world’

In Diary of a Young Naturalist the teenager tells of his struggles and devotion to nature

Sixteen-year-old naturalist Dara McAnulty. Photograph: Elaine Hill

Sixteen-year-old naturalist Dara McAnulty. Photograph: Elaine Hill

When Dara McAnulty talks about the natural world, he comes alive. His arms fill the screen as he describes his most memorable experience of recent weeks – a chance encounter with a pair of red kites.

“We’ve got this sort of bridle path that sneaks in between these gorse bushes so the air is already heavy with the small of coconut because the gorse are in full bloom and they smell tropical,” he explains. “All of a sudden, out of absolutely nowhere, these two red kites suddenly appear and they start wheeling above us and the sun glints off them. It’s perfect.”

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