Top 10 Tips To Help You Capture Stunning Photos Of Birds In Flight
Bird Photography
November 20, 2019

Bird photography is a very popular part of wildlife photography since you can see different birds in any part of the world you go to. There are local birds, there are exotic birds, and there are also seasonal birds. This gives you a great scope throughout the year to have a great time building your bird photography portfolio.

There's something special about photographs that show flying birds. It makes the pictures creative and moreover, the spreading wings of the birds show the power and the identity of any bird. 

In this blog, we have written down some amazing top tips to capture stunning photos of birds in flight.


Here Are 10 Tips To Capture Flying Birds


Start With Slow Paced Birds:


If you right away try tomorrow to capture some fast-moving bird, then it is going to be very frustrating for you. Because the camera settings might fail or you won't be alert enough. So to kick start with bird photography, it is advisable that you start with slow-paced birds, whose action is easier to trace and gives you enough time to capture it in your camera. Once you think you can comfortably do it, then go for face flying bird. Do it gradually. Take your time to practice enough. 


Learn Behavior Of The Birds:



Birds have a very common and repetitive kind of behavior. Whenever they are in sight, they are ready to prey OR they'll already be strolling in circles in the sky above. To capture their flight with precision, you must first understand their behavior. And for that, you must keep in observing them. Once you get into the game, you'll know when the bird is going to fly. Hence getting prepared to click a photo. 


Point Of View:


The point of view is a game-changer, especially in bird photography. It can make a photograph excellent or totally ruin it. The same setting, same bird and same background, but a different point of view give you different photos.  The best point of views in bird photography is from below, or when the bird is flying towards you. If the bird is flying against you, then it doesn't give enough of a creative look. 


Suggested Camera Settings:


To capture a flying bird, the shutter speed should be really fast. It should be something around 1/1000 to 1/1600 in Aperture Priority. Aperture priority mode will let you take full control of the depth of field of your photograph. So when you keep your ISO at minimum, then it's going to be an ideal setting for you to shoot a fast-moving bird. 


Some settings you can follow are:

The image in RAW Quality

NEF (RAW) recording: Type: Lossless compressed

NEF (RAW) bit depth: 14-bit

White Balance: Auto

Active D-Lighting: Off

Vignette Control: Off

High ISO NR: Normal

ISO Sensitivity: 100 (Base ISO), ISO sensitivity auto control


Needed Focus Point:



If you have a DSLR camera, then make the optimum use of Live focus, it will make your task easier. Or the best focus point you can use is 21 points or 9points out of the 51 points. Try to focus on the eye of the bird to make the picture more compelling.


Track Your Subject Well:


Yes, you can trust your instincts. But the best way to go about in bird photography is to track the bird, as soon as it takes a flight. And don't hit the shutter right away. Track as long as the bird flies, and your camera has enough time to focus on the bird. Once the focus is locked, you can hit the shutter as much as you want.


Composition Is Important:


Composition gives the photograph a creative touch. In bird photography, the right photography will communicate with the viewers. You can use various tricks like the rule of thirds where you use any frame the bird in any block of the grid and get creative with it. Read Our Blog on Composition In Bird Photography for more tips. 


Contrasting Background:


It is not very difficult to capture a flying bird against a blue sky. You just have to keep your angles and composition good enough, so that you capture the bird and there is a contrast in the background which will highlight the birds even more. 


Also, Capture Landing Shots:


Landing shots are the exact opposite of the taking off shots. The movement of the wings and the body language of the bird totally changes. It will certainly be fun to shoot it. Just make sure to face your back against the wind, that is the direction where the bird lands.


Try Silhouettes:


Don't just try bird photography in the middle of the day. Get out during sunset, and you'll be able to capture some stunning silhouettes against the sun. 

Try to have something in the foreground, like a tree, a rock or even the sun. It will add content to your photo. 



Try these tips and you'll be able to capture the flying birds with great creativity and precious.


Bird Photography
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