How to set up your camera to shoot bird photography

Best camera settings for bird photography

Bird Photography Settings Checklist

 

Best camera settings for bird photography: how to shoot static birds and pictures of birds in flight
Camera
NIKON D3
Focal Length
60mm
Aperture
f/20
Exposure
1/125s
ISO
400
Camera
NIKON D3
Focal Length
60mm
Aperture
f/20
Exposure
1/125s
ISO
400

While there are, of course, no definitive camera settings for any subject, given the number of factors involved, there are some general ‘ballpark’ settings that will get you just about where you need to be to get a exposure.

We’ve found the camera settings below generally yield pretty good results in our own bird photography.

Dial these in to your camera and it should just be a few tweaks here and there to get the bird photos you were hoping to achieve.

Static birds

  1. Aperture priority mode
  2. Maximum aperture
  3. ISO 100 or ISO 200
  4. Single shot AF mode
  5. Image stabilisation

Moving birds

  1. Shutter priority mode
  2. ISO 100 for motion blur, at least 200 to freeze motion
  3. 1/125 sec or slower to render motion as a creative blur
  4. 1/500 sec or faster to freeze any fast-moving action
  5. Focus tracking mode
  6. Continuous shooting

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