Ireland’s last leprechaun whisperer reveals all

There are only 236 leprechauns left

A leprechaun enjoying a pint. Credit: Aleksangel/

Irish folklore has many mythical characters such as the banshees or Tir na nOg, but according to one man Leprechauns are 100 per cent real.

Kevin Woods, recognised as Ireland’s one and only leprechaun whisperer, recently shared astonishing claims on Ireland AM.

During the broadcast, Woods, who comes from Carlingford, County Louth and affectionately known as McCoillte, shared some of the secrets involving leprechauns and their long history which has become intertwined with human spirits.

According to woods’ official website: ‘He talks to the 236 leprechauns that still exist there. They are affectionately known in Carlingford as “Carlichauns.”‘

Leprechaun population under threat

‘There are 236 left, there were millions of them,’ McCoillte revealed during the interview with Alan Hughes and Muireann O’Connell.

He went on to explain how leprechaun spirits began to bond with human souls centuries ago, a time when Vikings first invaded Ireland. This attachment, he claimed, was a kindly act to help the Irish people during the brutal Viking occupation.

Survival efforts and skepticism

As the spokesperson for these mystical beings, McCoillte has taken it upon himself to ensure the survival of this species, dwindling in numbers as belief in their existence wanes.

‘They all died. There were millions of them, as you know, all over Ireland. The leprechaun spirit attached itself to the human spirit, and it didn’t do that until the Vikings came to Ireland, say around 802. They were so cruel,’ he commented.

Addressing viewers’ doubts, he added, ‘If I said to some people about God, people tell me that’s a lot of nonsense or if they tell me that Simon Harris is the new Taoiseach, and whatever and he’s going to be useless… 50 per cent — I may think he’s wonderful, but others may think he’ll be useless!’

Cultural impact and leprechaun legacy

The decline in leprechaun numbers is not just a matter of supernatural concern but reflects a broader cultural shift as Irish emigration surged post-famine, reducing the believers who fuelled their existence.

Despite his family’s disinterest in inheriting his unique role, McCoillte remains committed. He encourages psychic visitors to the leprechaun’s cavern beneath Slieve Foye mountain, where the remaining Irish elves reside, to embrace this mystical gift.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.