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  1. #1
    Junior Member

    Telephoto Lens Suggestions for Birding

    Hello -

    New to the site. I have a D3400 + Starter kit I bought last year. The 70-300 lens with the kit was fine, at first. However, getting close to raptors is a challenge.

    I would like to get a better/longer lens due to the elusive nature of the raptors. I have a mono-pod, but the majority of my shooting is free hand.

    Thanks for your help.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


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  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Woodyg3's Avatar

    Re: Telephoto Lens Suggestions for Birding

    How much is in your budget?

    Some to look at

    Tamron 150-600
    Nikon 200-500
    Nikon 300mm f/4 with a 1.4x teleconverter

    For more money, the new 500mm f/5.6E AF-S NIKKOR PF ED VR looks to be a great lens
    Thanks/Like hark Thanks/liked this post
     
    Woody Green

    Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can't Lose

    D500, D7200, D7100, D70

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Ironwood's Avatar

    Re: Telephoto Lens Suggestions for Birding

    To give an answer here, it really depends on your budget. But you would probably be happy with a Nikon 200-500, or the Sigma or Tamron 150-600.
    Brad


    Every Day might not be a good Day,
    ​ but there is something good in every Day.

  4. #4
    Staff
    Super Mod
    Marilynne's Avatar

    Re: Telephoto Lens Suggestions for Birding

    Welcome!

    I use the Tamron 150-600mm (handheld) for birding.

  5. #5
    Senior Member

    Re: Telephoto Lens Suggestions for Birding

    Welcome to the forum! I use a Sigma 150-600 C and my wife has the Tamron 150-600. They both do a good job.

  6. #6
    Staff
    Super Mod
    hark's Avatar

    Re: Telephoto Lens Suggestions for Birding

    Quote Originally Posted by Woodyg3 View Post
    How much is in your budget?

    Some to look at

    Tamron 150-600
    Nikon 200-500
    Nikon 300mm f/4 with a 1.4x teleconverter

    For more money, the new 500mm f/5.6E AF-S NIKKOR PF ED VR looks to be a great lens
    I was using my 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 VR for birds and eventually bought a Nikon 300mm f/4 with the 1.4x teleconverter that Woody mentioned. Wow! It was amazing (I have since upgraded to the 300mm f/4 PF VR). Anyway, the non-PF model should be lighter in weight for hand holding than any of the 150-600mm lenses listed as well as Nikon's 200-500mm lens. The advantage to those zooms is they have VR.

    The only downside of the Nikon 300mm f/4 is the non-PF version doesn't have VR. This non-PF 300mm f/4 lens is approximately the same weight and size as the Nikon 70-200mm VRii. The Nikon 300mm f/4 is also amazingly sharp. It might be slightly sharper than anything you'd get from a zoom, too. The focal length equivalent on your DX body with a 1.4 teleconverter is 420mm compared with the 500mm or 600mm long end of the zooms. Not quite as long as them but longer than what you are currently using. And the combo is lighter than the zooms. Good luck with whatever you choose.
    Cindy
    Flickr
    and
    My 2018 Thread
    Where the Spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art
    -- Leonardo da Vinci



  7. #7
    Junior Member

    Re: Telephoto Lens Suggestions for Birding

    Thanks for all the replies. I will look at the different options. Thanks!


    2017 D3400
    Nikkor AF-P DX 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
    Nikkor AF-P DX 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED
    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  8. #8
    Senior Member

    Re: Telephoto Lens Suggestions for Birding

    I have owned most of the earlier mentioned lenses, ie; nikon 300f4 af-s+1.4tc, sigma 150-600 c and nikon 200-500vr.
    I found the 300f4 and 1.4tc to be the sharpest (a little better than the 200-500vr and more so vs the sigma 150-600), it also has the better close up performance if you chose to shoot things like dragonflies and butterflies. Lack of vr has to be taken in to consideration (I am a dedicated monopod user so it is a moot point for me).
    The sigma 150-600 was my main lens for about 18 months and I was never completely happy with it as i found it to be inconsistent in its focus and generally a little sub-par in colour, contrast and fine detail.
    The nikon 200-500vr trumps the sigma in just about every aspect and is my main lens at the moment.
    The reasons are its sharpness is near to the 300f4 and tc. Its vr is excellent and the flexibility of having a zoom.
    The 200-500vr





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