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Don't Die in Autumn

‘Paul, my brother, still questions whether I was born or if, in fact, I was hatched.’

Eric Dempsey is mad about birds. In fact, they have changed his whole life.Having once been gainfully employed by a semi-state company in a secure, pensionable job, he gave it all up to dedicate his life to birdwatching.

In this remarkable memoir, Eric tells us of his love of nature from his earliest days and how it has influenced him throughout his life, inspiring many adventures, including trips around the world. In doing so, he provides a snapshot of growing up in Dublin in the ’60s and ’70s. Peppered with stories that are both hilarious and poignant, such as instructing his parents not to die in autumn (it’s the best time for birdwatching) and going on safari to fulfil the dream of a friend who had passed away, this book will make you laugh, cry, and everything in between.

Some people spend all their lives dreaming of following their passion; Eric Dempsey’s memoir reveals a life all the more rewarding for doing so.

‘A joyously honest chronicle of birding.’Michael Viney

‘An inspirational story.’ Dick Warner


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Publication Date

August 2015




Paperback, 304 pages

Country of Origin



Gill Books


225 x 156 mm


By Eric Dempsey

Availability Status


Eric Dempsey is recognised as one of Ireland’s leading bird experts and is a professional guide, speaker, wildlife photographer and writer. Eric is also an experienced broadcaster and a member of the ‘Mooney Goes Wild’ team on RTÉ Radio 1. He is the author of the bestselling Finding Birds in Ireland, The Field Guide to Ireland’s Birds, Birdwatching in Ireland with Eric Dempsey and Ireland’s Wildlife Year.

Eric was born and bred in Finglas in north Dublin. When he’s not off travelling the world in search of Victoria’s Riflebirds and Tibetan Snowcock, he is found enjoying and photographing our native Irish birdlife in Co. Wicklow, where he now lives with his wife Hazel.

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