Birder's Guide

NOV 2018

Birder's Guide is the American Birding Association's newest publication. Each issue focuses on a key subject, providing tips from experienced birders on a wide variety of topics like Travel, Listing & Taxonomy, Gear, and Conservation & Community.

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Page 26 of 43

■ OM-D E-M1 Mark II camera body ■ 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO zoom lens ■ 40-150mm f2.8 PRO zoom lens ■ Ultra-wide-angle 7-14mm f2.8 PRO zoom lens ■ HLD-9 Power Battery Grip ■ MC-14 1.4x teleconverter ■ 300mm f4.0 IS PRO telephoto lens ■ FL-900R electronic flash 25 November 2018 | Birder's Guide to Gear One incredibly useful Olympus fea- ture not found on DSLR cameras is Pro- Capture. We've all waited as our subject prepared to fly… and waited… and then it took off and our reflexes were just not quite good enough, so we missed the best shot. With Pro-Capture, all you need to do is hold the shutter release button half- way down, in the "pre-focus" position, then react as usual, pressing the shutter release the rest of the way down to cap- ture a burst of as many photos as you like. Pro-Capture then saves the 10–18 frames (depending on your frame rate choice) before your "first" shot taken by pressing the release all the way. No more, "I should have been quicker!" Focus options are numerous, from a precise single point to 121 cross-type points covering the screen. I found that, for birds in flight, the 9-point option, along with the continuous focus set- ting, worked best. For perched birds, the single-point focusing on the eye was op- timum. Making the switch was easy and quick to learn, by pressing a well-placed button on the back with my thumb be- fore spinning the front dial with my index finger to scroll through the options. My DSLR has optical viewfinders (which use mirrors to allow you to look directly through your lens), so the elec- tronic viewfinder of the mirrorless sys- tem took some getting used to. I real- ized quickly that, especially for birds in flight, the automatic image review has to be turned off. I missed a lot of oppor- tunities at first because, after shooting a burst of frames, the electronic viewfinder showed me the last image taken, which then caused me to lose sight of my sub- ject. Turned off, I did much better. However, I still struggled with the electronic viewfinder because it is slow to turn on when brought up to my face. Optical viewfinders are always "on". At first, I had a much more difficult time get- ting on subjects in flight than I do with the optical viewfinder. Toward the end of my second Galápagos trip, I was get- ting much better, so practice is certainly important. One trick… practice touching the shutter release as you lift the camera

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