Birder's Guide

DEC 2013

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 20 of 51

It's still hard to beat the overall quality produced by a DSLR camera with a good lens. Using a Canon EOS 7D with a 400mm F5.6 lens, my wife captures the best photos in the family. That includes birds in fight and even the challenging grays, blacks, and whites of gulls fying in bright sunlight, such as this winterplumaged Bonaparte's Gull. Photo © Jeannette Lovitch. to almost $7000. Telephoto lenses (at least one of which is necessary to pair with the camera body) run the gamut from off-brand options for as little as another $500 up to more than $20,000! As an example, my wife recently upgraded her birding photography gear to the very popular Canon 7D with a 400mm lens, which, combined, set us back about $3,000. That's a lot of photo notecards for us to sell at the store to make it back! that requires the most space in your bag (not including an entire digiscoping setup). –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Super-zoom • Diversity of subjects: For extreme distance (for example, photographing shorebirds on a distant mudfat), this is not a good option. Super-zoom cameras are defined as having an optical zoom of at least 15x, although today's options are much more powerful. (Note that camera zooms use a different zoom ratio than birding optics, so a 15x zoom does not equate to a 15x, or 15 power, binocular—see blue box on page 20.) While some have interchangeable lenses, you're usually looking at an all-in-one package. Rapidly advancing and improving, these run the range from fully automatic point-and-shoots with more power to complex, advanced photography –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– • Learning curve: SLR is harder to learn than other methods, especially if you are unfamiliar with exposure and other manual settings. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– • Size and weight: SLR is the heaviest camera option, and the one 40 and Bill Schmoker's ABA Blog post at . For more information on SLR cameras, check out Sherrie Duris's article on page December 2013 | Birder's Guide to Gear 19

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