BTO Youth Representatives

The BTO Youth Representatives are part of BTO's wider Youth Engagement Strategy, which has been developed by the Youth Advisory Panel. The Youth Representatives work on engaging more young people in nature and science in their regions through organising events and working with local communities and stakeholders. We hope to expand the Youth Representative network to include more of the UK as the project grows. 

Get in Contact

Make contact with a Youth Representative in your area.

Email youth@bto.org

Alice, 19, Cornwall

Alice is a second year Zoology student at the University of Exeter in Cornwall. She volunteers for a range of different UK wildlife charities in Cornwall and Essex, with a special interest in cetaceans and bats. She has been privileged to travel the world with her family which she believes has given her first-hand insight into the numerous environmental issues we face as a planet. As an aspiring conservationist, she has always been particularly drawn to birds. She started bird ringing in the summer of 2020 and is now working towards her C permit. One of her favourite UK bird species has to be the Crow – their intelligence gives them a comical attribute as they work out different situations.

Alice is part of the Cornwall Youth Representative team, along with Amy and David.

Amy, 22, Cornwall

Amy is a Masters student at the University of Exeter’s Cornwall campus, studying British Antarctic Survey data on long-term changes in the body mass of albatross and petrel chicks in relation to environmental change. Alongside her studies she is a Trustee of the Cameron Bespolka Trust. Getting to know other young people and spreading enthusiasm for birds is something which she really enjoys and hopes to continue in her role as a Youth Representative for the BTO!

Amy is part of the Cornwall Youth Representative team, along with Alice and David.

Belinda, 22, Herefordshire

Belinda is a recent graduate from Bangor University, having completed a 4-year degree in Environmental Conservation. She was lucky enough to spend her second year studying in Bergen, Norway and she also completed a placement year at Blakeney Point and Titchwell Marsh as well as in Tortuguero National Park, Costa Rica. Her interest and enthusiasm for conservation and the natural environment has stemmed from being raised in rural Herefordshire and spending the majority of her free time surrounded by nature, whether this be by hiking, paddle boarding, or running. She can’t wait to work with BTO to enthuse others about wildlife and inspire more individuals to get involved with conservation work.

Dara, 16, Northern Ireland

Dara is a 16-year-old naturalist and author from Northern Ireland. His debut book ‘Diary of a Young Naturalist’ was awarded the Wainwright Prize for nature writing and the Books Are My Bag Readers Award for non-fiction, the youngest author to have won both awards. Dara is a fervent environmental campaigner, highlighting biodiversity declines, raptor persecution and youth access to nature. In 2019 he became the youngest recipient of the RSPB Medal for his conservation work. He is most passionate about birds of prey and volunteers with Northern Ireland Raptor Study Group and the Hawk Eyes satellite tagging project, for which he raised £6,000 to fund. He is happiest outside with a pair of binoculars, a notebook and his camera; watching and learning from nature.

David, 18, Cornwall

David is studying Conservation Biology and Ecology at the University of Exeter’s Penryn campus in Cornwall. He is a keen birder and naturalist, and enjoys volunteering for the Wildlife Trust and participating in BTO surveys. He is excited to be a BTO Youth Representative, and is looking forward to sharing his passion for the natural world with other young people.

David is part of the Cornwall Youth Representative team, along with Alice and Amy.

Florence, 24, Cardiff

Florence is 24 years old and an unconditional bird lover. She is particularly interested in nature's way to enchant and heal, and its link to our own health and wellbeing. As a BTO Youth Representative, Florence hopes to encourage more young people to learn about the musical, colourful, and fascinating world of birds.

Florence is part of the Cardiff Youth Representative team, along with Gethin.

Gethin, 22, Cardiff

Gethin is a 22-year-old nature enthusiast from Cardiff, and a recent graduate of 'Conservation Biology and Ecology' at Exeter University. Always keen to share his passion for wildlife with others, at university he wrote regular articles for the student nature magazine 'Life', and also regularly engaged with school classes with the nature-focused society 'Generation Wild'. A keen birder since childhood, he is excited to inspire young people to get stuck into surveys, and to expand the BTO community in the region of south Wales.

Gethin is part of the Cardiff Youth Representative team, along with Florence.

Josh, 16, Shropshire

Josh is 16 years old and the BTO Youth Representative for Shropshire. As Youth Representative he aims to inspire and engage a new generation of nature enthusiasts both inside and outside of the region.

Josh is part of the Shropshire Youth Representative team, along with Sian.

Kate, 20, Gloucestershire

Kate has been fascinated by the natural world for as long as she can remember, and is working towards a career in conservation. She is studying Zoology at the University of Exeter and is currently on her placement year with the Reserve Team at WWT Slimbridge. She is also a C Permit Bird Ringer and has been ringing for four years. She has a soft spot for seabirds, and her favourite bird is a Storm Petrel!

Keir, 18, London

Keir is from London and is currently taking a gap year before going to University in 2021. He is really passionate about the natural world and learning more about our relationship with it. One of his favourite hobbies is to take photos of nature; especially birds in their natural habitat.

Lizzie, 22, Aberystwyth 

Lizzie is currently pursuing a research masters as part of the Mycology Research Group at Aberystwyth University, developing genomic technologies to investigate fungal endophyte communities in grasses. With an undergraduate degree in ecology, they hope to bring ecologically centred approaches to the plant breeding and agricultural research carried out here in Wales. They’re also passionate about wildlife recording, especially moth trapping. Before pivoting to microbiology, Lizzie’s focus was in practical conservation and birding, where they especially enjoyed being part of a community of both amateur and expert recorders. The massive value and power of citizen science never fails to astound them, and they hope by being a BTO Youth Representative they can repay the service of those who inspired them to pursue a life in science and nature.

Luke, 16, Oxfordshire

Luke is 16 and from Oxfordshire. He’ll be covering the Bucks and Oxon area and is looking forward to working as a Youth Rep because he wants to meet other young wildlife enthusiasts. He hopes to show lots of young people how wonderful wildlife is.

Maria, 23, Yorkshire

Maria is a 23-year-old nature lover from Ripon, North Yorkshire. She recently finished her BSc in Animal science at the University of Nottingham where she also spent a year working at WWT Martin Mere as a placement student. She is a keen birder, moth-er, trainee bird ringer and WeBS counter.

Mark, 21, Scottish Borders

Mark is a 21-year-old Ecology student in his final year at the University of Edinburgh. He is particularly fascinated by urban ecology and is specifically interested in the response of birds to different gradients of urbanisation. He is also passionate about making bird watching as inclusive and accessible as possible.

Sian, 16, Shropshire

Sian is a 16-year-old birder from Shropshire who is a passionate photographer and budding conservationist. She is also interested in other flora and fauna such as dragonflies and butterflies, especially on her local patch.

Sian is part of the Shropshire Youth Representative team, along with Josh.



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