If you’re interested in how to photograph birds, wonder no more! Westland’s professional photographer, Pete, is on hand to give his top tips for taking the perfect bird snaps. Let’s see what he has to say…
Location, location, location
Try to set up feeders in a location where a good camera angle can be achieved. Pay attention to the background. The further away the background, the better, as the bird feeder will stand out more and give you a better result.
Use a decent camera with a sharp, good quality lens. A DSLR camera is the best choice, with a 200mm or longer lens. Ideally, you should be using a camera support, like a tripod or monopod. A monopod will give the freedom to quickly move the camera around whilst still giving good support.
Always use the widest aperture on the lens; this is the smallest f stop number. Also, you need to shoot between 1/100 and 1/250 or higher to get the sharpest results. The lowest ISO always gives the best image quality, but you may need to increase this to between 400 and 800 ISO in poor light.
The golden rule
Finally when you photograph birds, a lot of patience is required to get the best images. This could mean sitting for several hours, two or three times a day. Remember – birds move very quickly, so you’ll need to take a lot of pictures to get even a few really good ones. But once you do, it’s all worth it!