Wildlife Photography -which camera, which lens?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Brown Dog, Mar 4, 2006.

  1. Brown Dog

    Brown Dog Writers Guild

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    Getting frustrated, took my camera ( an Olympus family digital type) out today, got a few of what has become my standard sort of a photo:
    [​IMG]

    Not exactly magazine material, is it!? I have to get so close to even vaguely fill the viewfinder...and then contend with shutter lag...that I don't seem to progress beyond this sort of shot.

    I need to 'up-gun' a bit. I want a camera with low shutter lag and a lens that equates to about a x10 bino.

    For the money I want to spend, I'm thinking Nikon D50...but haven't a clue as to lenses.

    ...I'm sure some of you have been down this path already; grateful for any advice!
     
  2. älg

    älg Well-Known Member

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    Well you cold also try a spotting scope in which you can plug the digital camera.... that´s a LR objective for a camera¡¡
     

  3. jameslovesjammie

    jameslovesjammie Well-Known Member

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    I would look at the Canon Rebel XT or Nikon D70 with a BIG lens (ie Canon EF 300-600) That will get you up close, and personal with that deer's rear!
     
  4. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    Nikon coolpix 880.

    If you want to try digiscoping try a Swarovski HD spotting scope with a FIXED power eyepeice and a Nikon coolpix 990 (they dont make anymore) Ebay ussually has some used for cheap.

    Look here at this article: http://www.digital-nature-photography.co...digiscoping.php

    The quail was taken through a Swarovski (NOT HD) scope and a variable power eye peice. The elk was taken with the same setup but at over 1/2 mile away in high wind and VERY low light. Imagine no wind and a better spoting scope set up! Cammera was a coolpix 990.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Len Backus

    Len Backus Administrator Staff Member

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    Brown Dog

    I have been known to take a wildlife photo or two. I have a D50 as my car's glove box camera, always with me. This would be a good choice on a budget. I'd consider Nikon's 70-300 digital lens for about US $150.

    If budget and weight are no concern go for the D2X body and a 600/4.0 lens for about $11,000 and 20 pounds of weight.
     
  6. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

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    I also second, or third the digiscoping idea. My buddy has the swarovski HD, and a nikon camera. It's super fun, takes great shots at a long long way away. good luck, let us know what you decide on.
     
  7. Brown Dog

    Brown Dog Writers Guild

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    All,
    Thanks, I'd never even heard of digiscoping before!

    Michael's link made for some interesting reading; some excellent photos ....
    looks like an excellent solution; as well as an excuse to buy a good spotting scope!

    ....one thing I can't work out is whether you are literally just taking a pic through the scope eyepiece, using a connector to hold the camera in place or if something more complicated is being done...

    to try the concept I just tried clamping my binos (10x42)in a tripod, putting my camera against the eyepiece and taking some photos. Vignetting was awful and the camera wouldn't focus sharply.....
    [​IMG]
    ..I tried every variable, zooming in, bino eyepiece in for spectacles or out, camera on macro etc...does this mean my camera will be unsuitable for digiscoping...or have I misunderstood the 'camera attachment method?

    ...I can see I'm going to have to get into my nearest expert shop to answer all this! ..but any thoughts gratefully received!
     
  8. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    Browndog,

    Here's a pic through a Leica LRF and Cannon PowerShop ABS.
    Bedded moose at 505yds and mommy under the tree to the left. Camera was set on wide angle. Which makes the digilens about 7X
    [​IMG]

    Here are some bedded elk about a mile away. Same set up with camera set at max telephoto, about 3 times 7 or 21 power.
    [​IMG]

    Here's one of a little friend of mine that turned out as about a good as this fella's gonna get. Same camera setup.
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Bart B

    Bart B Well-Known Member

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  10. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

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    yes there is an adapter that screws onto the spotting scope, and that clamps onto the camera. Although, as mentioned earlier, you can just hlod your camera up to binocs, or a scope, and get decent pics. I've done it with my wind river binocs, and had some fun with it, but you wont reach a really high level of clarity as you would with a scope and camera mount.
     
  11. Ian M

    Ian M Well-Known Member

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    Dog,
    So happens I was invited to a seminar on Digiscoping last summer put on by Nikon. Here is a link to some of their toys:

    http://www.nikon.co.jp/main/eng/news/2004/digiscoping_e_04.htm

    What Nikon has going for them is they build both the spotting scope, camera and ideal interface device. Makes for almost fool-proof imaging. I have all of their lenses, a camera and scope and it is a slick system. Plus you can use the camera for your kid's birthdays and the spotter for hunting.

    They are going to sell two kits, all ready to go. They make two sizes of ED Fieldscopes and fit two digital cameras to them, about a 5 and 7 meg or maybe higher now since it is a few months since the seminar.

    I can take some images of the digiscoping system and pass them on if you wish. Trick is they have a special digiscoping lens on the spotting scope that has a massive groove in its outer shell for locking the interface to. The camera fits like a glove in the interface. I manged to break off the cable release but replaced it easily.

    Good luck with your decision - the Field Scopes are incredible spotting scopes by the way.

    Going for a drive next week.
     
  12. Brown Dog

    Brown Dog Writers Guild

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    All,

    Great replies...my eyes have been opened!

    Digiscoping definitely looks to be what I'm after and ..Ian...that link to Nikon is just spot-on...means I can print it off and go to my camera shop and not sound like some day-dreaming lunatic!

    Very many thanks!



    ..enjoy your drive!
     
  13. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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  14. Underclocked

    Underclocked Member

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