"A Young Naturalist Inspires With Joy, Not Doom"

"At 17, Dara McAnulty is becoming one of Britain’s most acclaimed nature writers, with work that touches on his autism as much as the world around his home."

"MONEYDARRAGH, Northern Ireland — While he carefully stepped from one moss-carpeted rock to another, Dara McAnulty outlined his rules for nature watching.

“You’ll never see something if you bring a camera,” he said on this coastal stretch of Northern Ireland, “and you’ll definitely never see what you’re intending to find.”

His rules quickly proved true. McAnulty had wanted to use the ramble near his home to show off the local curlew population, but it was high tide — with waves sending salt spray spurting over the rocks — and there were no birds to be seen.

Instead, he squatted down to stare into a rock pool in search of his latest obsession: shrimp. Seaweed swayed in the water, but there were no signs of marine life. Then, suddenly, he noticed the smallest movement. “Oh, there’s a shrimpy boy!” he shouted. “Oh my God, it’s amazing. Can you see it? Can you see it?”"

Alex Marshal reports for the New York Times July 7, 2021.

Source: NYTimes, 07/08/2021