Drone Bird Photography

Bird Photography Tips plus Some Drone Action

Birders can learn more about birds and become more active in birding when drones are used in bird photography. With a high-resolution drone camera, plus these tips, you can perfect your shots.


You need a lens with a long focal length. Versatile and fairly lightweight, a 300mm zoom lens captures the best images. For a sharper image, try out a 400mm prime lens. Keep in mind that the weight of a lens can increase the probability of hand-shake blur. If you are working with a heavy camera, use a monopod or tripod.


Using a wide aperture like f/4 will give you a shallow depth-of-field, which isolates the bird from its background and directs attention to its colours and curves. To have full control over the aperture and shutter speed, set the ISO to auto. A fast shutter speed ensures you are ready for action. You never know when a bird will take flight. So be ready for that.


How you focus on birds depends on what equipment you have and which approach you are taking. Some cameras auto-focus faster and more accurately than others, so experiment to know how fast your auto-focus motor moves. Since birds are moving objects, change your autofocus to continuous focus which tracks motion. For better results, learn to focus manually.

Timing and Location

Birds are very active in spring – the ground softens, seeds start coming out, and worms are everywhere. In autumn, they avidly gather food before winter sets in. Whatever the season, early mornings and sundowns will draw the most action.

For close-ups, find a location birds enjoy, hide, and wait. This is where patience pays. The better you hide, the closer birds will come to you. Tuck yourself in a bush or hide behind a tree to camouflage yourself. Try to stay still and quiet.

Your backyard is one of the best places to practice bird photography. Keep your camera handy so you are ready when a bird lands in your yard. From there, photograph birds in their natural habitats like beaches, forests and waterways.

Visit zoos, humane societies and bird sanctuaries where you can find exotic species. A nearby nature reserve or national park may be a bird spectacle. Birds living in areas with frequent human visitors are less skittish and camera-shy.

Every environment will cause birds to behave in different ways so its best to do some research beforehand. If you’re ever in South Australia and are looking for drone photography Adelaide services, it’d be best to reach out to them to help you capture the most high-quality bird photography from afar.


For the subject to pop out, the background should be clean, simple, and dark or neutral. Use your depth-of-field or point-of-view to remove background clutter, or blur it out using a large aperture.

Tips for Drone Bird Photography

Know the laws protecting endangered species and migratory birds from drones. Observe federal, local and tribal rules regarding drone use. Areas with extensive bird numbers are considered no-fly zones. Avoid flying over birds and their habitats during sensitive periods like moulting or breeding. Bio-inspired drones that look and fly like a bird will not be attacked by birds of prey. Keep a distance of 30 metres from where birds are flying, wading or feeding. Don’t play games like competing with birds in flight.

Australian Birdwatching

Field Guide to Australian Birds and Birdwatching

Avid twitchers and those folks who are getting into birdwatching, this guide is for you. Read on to build your birding skills.

Field Guide

Up until mid-2017, there were only four field guides covering Aussie birdies. These books were excellent; each with its strong points and birders were well-informed. Now they’re all out-dated as many taxonomy revisions have been made in recent years. New guidebooks have a lot to offer, not just names and pictures of individual species. Read the information on habitats, bird families, birdwatching tips, etc. Each guide uses taxonomic order, not alphabetic, so use the index to find birds.

Now, there’s a new guidebook that supersedes the others. The Australian Bird Guide (ABG) by Peter Menkhorst, Rohan Clarke, Danny Rogers and artists Kim Franklin, Jeff Davies and Peter Marsack has over 10,000 birds. For bird watching tours Australia, see Australian Wildlife Journeys. Even for general wildlife tours in Australia, see them also.

Get a Checklist

Download a local bird list, keep it with your guidebook, and tick off the birds you’ve seen. Learn about the birds you haven’t seen so you can recognise them on your next excursion. Smartphone apps like Pizzey and Morcombe are good-to-have. Apps are better than books because they’re more convenient to carry and have a feature that plays bird sounds.


The more powerful the binocs, the better they are. A good configuration for birdwatching is 8×43. Simply put, the magnification is 8x and 43mm is the objective lens. Anything less than 6x and more than 12x narrows the field of view and makes it hard to get good views. Small binoculars are convenient as they are light and can fit in a pocket, but they may not provide great viewing. Spotting scopes are great for longer-distance viewing, like shorebirds and waterbirds.


Bird photography adds a new dimension to birding, making it thrilling. For some, it’s the main focus of their bird watching and some keen photographers do without binoculars. Point-and-shoot cameras are available and able to capture good pictures and videos. A Nikon P9000 with an 83x zoom is a birders’ favourite. It’s versatile, lightweight, and the results are amazing.


Wear camouflaged clothing, and move about calmly and quietly, to gain the confidence of birds. A hat is another must-wear. It shades your head, protects it from being pocked by twigs and reduces glare around your eyes.

Be alert for sound and movement when searching out birds. Listen for calls, look for feathers and movement within the foliage, then bring your binoculars up and focus steadily. Approach birds slowly and silently. Quick advances scare off birds, and once a bird flies off, your chances of seeing it properly are almost zero. Observe nests from a distance rather than going in for a closer look. Close-ups put the nest at risk by alerting predators or spooking the parents.

Tag a Guide

Even with all these skills and tools, you can miss the sights you crave. Go birding with a local guide to max out your experience. A guide is an extra brain and pair of skilled eyes and ears.

Binoculars Bird Watching

Bird watching is a very fulfilling hobby which many people enjoy participating in during their free time. However, the choice of bird watching binoculars that you use should be considered very carefully. Before you purchase your very own binoculars for bird watching, consider the following:

Beginner Tips

Before we start it is important to understand that binoculars are essentially two small telescopes which are manufactured together to form one item. Binoculars are one of the handiest and most utilized optic instruments of them all.

For new bird watchers, the best pair of binoculars is one that has a wider field of view. This enables the person who is bird watching to spot the bird and follow its movement. A new bird watcher should also choose binoculars that allow them to focus on the bird immediately and to catch details in low light conditions. You should look for specific watching binoculars that have easy focusing controls both for coarse and fine focus. When choosing a new pair of bird watching binoculars you should ensure that they are comfortable, put them up against your eyes and check how they feel. Does the eyepiece feel comfortable up against your eye?

Ideal Magnification (Power) for Binoculars

While it is tempting to choose the best birding optics available for your money, most bird watching experts recommend a magnification power of 7 or 8. Those with a magnification of 10 have a smaller field of view and have a dimmer image than that of a smaller magnification binocular. Also, a pair of binoculars with a higher magnification is very sensitive to how you handle them as everything is magnified, this includes movement, therefore, your own shakes will be brought to your attention more. So the higher the power binocular, the harder it will be to keep them steady. Binoculars with a power of 6, 7, or 8 are the most convenient and easiest to use for most people. The higher powers may sound ideal to you, but more often this just results in blurred views and a poor bird watching experience.

Handling of Binoculars Bird Watching

Another thing to consider when choosing the perfect bird watching binoculars is its portability. This is one of the reasons why you should practice holding the binoculars. You need to see if you are comfortable with the bulk and the weight of the binoculars for bird watching. Porro prism binoculars are designed for people with large hands and feature a “dog leg” shape. These Porro prisms binoculars have an eyepiece which is offset to one side with respect to the front lens. Its bulk promotes steady handling. The prism within a pair of binoculars or a spotting scope makes the image appear properly oriented. It is the prisms that are the expensive component, but unfortunately, without them, you would see an upside down and reversed image through the binocular. Porro prisms are an older style. Roof prism binoculars, on the other hand, are much newer. These are a lot smaller and more compact than Porro prisms. The name roof prism comes from the fact that they resemble a small house with a peaked roof. This compact nature allows them to fit within a smaller housing and enables to be a more compact pair of birding binoculars.

Flexibility in Focusing

Focusing of binoculars and scopes should be flexible; this is because birds are very unpredictable creatures. Most birding binocular has a coarse and fine focusing. A great pair of bird watching binoculars is Minox binoculars of the Minox HG brand, these offer great focusing and flexibility. The focusing ability of this Minox birding binoculars goes from close up to infinity with just one full turn of the focus knob. There is even a distance scale in the focus knob that turns the focus knob into a rangefinder. This is great for bird watchers who want to know how far they are from the birds that they are spotting.

Conditioned for All Kinds of Weather

Another brand to look out for is the birding range of Fujinon binoculars. These kinds of binoculars are manufactured by the camera manufacturer Fuji. They produce a range of birdwatching glasses that are of high quality. Fujinon binoculars boast of being nitrogen-sealed and waterproof. Its rubber armor makes them the best binoculars for those who are first-time bird watchers. These kinds of bird watching binoculars are designed for all-weather conditions. All-purpose birding binocular helps you focus on finding a rare bird species rather than fiddling with the focus knob or worrying whether or not your binoculars are going to be destroyed by the high humidity.