Daniel López-Velasco is a young but virtually life-long Spanish birder and keen wildlife photographer who lives in Salinas in Asturias province in northwestern Spain. Dani (pronounced Danny) started birding at the unusually early age of five, and soon became very keen, taking field notes on shorebirds, gulls and seabirds as they were the most easily seen birds near his house. When he was 10, he found, below his house, the third record of Desert Wheatear for Spain, and since then he’s been very involved with advanced bird identification and rarities. He has spent thousands of hours doing seawatching, photographing seabirds and cetaceans, and working with seabird counts. However, his passion, above all, is global birding, with birds of paradise being his favourite birds since he was very little. Dani has been a member of the Spanish Rarities Committee since he was 19 and has found a number of ‘firsts’ for both Spain and other countries. He has had identification papers published in many ornithological journals, including Alula, Birding World, Cotinga, Dutch Birding and Neotropical Birding. His first birding trip outside Europe was to Costa Rica, when he was 12! Since then, he has travelled extensively in the Western Palearctic, and has birded widely all over the world too. His birding trips have already taken him to more than 40 countries on six continents. The oceans are a particular favourite: he has been on pelagics all over the globe and organizes pioneering trips off Spain and the Canary Islands. Dani lived for a year in Boston, Massachusetts, and speaks impressively fluent English. When he was 19, he was part of the team who won the Oryx prize for young naturalists, which took him on a long research trip to the most remote corners of Morocco. Dani is a qualified medical doctor, something that can prove useful for remote trips. He is currently working on an advanced photographic identification guide in Spanish.
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