Seeking ways of tracking birds in flight with 500mm lens

Started May 23, 2013 | Discussions thread
Barry Pearson
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Re: Seeking ways of tracking birds in flight with 500mm lens
In reply to JohnXLondon, May 29, 2013

JohnXLondon wrote:

Try taking a look at this article. The author is a soldier and uses techniques used to steady weapons;

http://wwwDOTpentaxforumsDOTcom/reviews/long-exposure-handhelds/introduction.html

See my original post. My main problem is acquiring and tracking the subject with a lens with a narrow field of view. (The Sigma 500mm is equivalent to a 750mm lens in 35mm terms).

I find it very hard to point the camera+lens at a bird in flight so that the bird is in the field of view. Then I find it very hard to keep it within the field of view while I fire 10 or more shots.

The weight of the lens is another problem. Long experience tells me that my limit for sustained hand-holding is a one kilogram lens, but the Sigma is a three kilogram lens.

The above article is about hand-holding for long exposures. That is a different problem. Also, the lens in the articles looks rather like my (one kilogram) 60-250mm f/4, which I have little trouble with. The Sigma lens is physically about twice as long as the 60-250mm when the latter is at the 60mm position. Some of the hand positions in the article appear impossible with the Sigma lens.

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