Best Cameras For Wildlife Photography

We often get asked our recommendations for the best cameras for wildlife photography.

If you’re looking for a good camera to add to your travel photography gear to photograph wildlife, it’s important to know and understand the features you’ll need in order to make the best comparisons.

10 best wildlife cameras

Wildlife photography requires patience and split-second reactions. Yes you’ll find good wildlife photography cameras in all price ranges to suit any budget, but keep in mind there are features you need specifically for taking pictures of wildlife.

Below are the top 10 cameras we recommend for wildlife photography.

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Nikon 500mm f5.6 Lens Review

Looking for an affordable lens for wildlife? Check out our review and why we LOVE the Nikon 500mm f5.6 lens for nature photography!

Features of a Good Wildlife Photography Camera

A good burst mode. This is important no matter what kind of wildlife you’re photographing. Animals don’t stay still very long so you’ll need to be able to capture movement in fractions of a second. Look for a camera that can capture a lot of frames within that second so you can capture THE shot. 

Decent buffer depth. This refers to how many continuous shots a camera is capable of capturing without stopping. A bigger buffer means more shots, which gives you a longer burst, that gives you a greater chance of capturing that perfect moment. Be aware that cameras will generally be able to capture a larger buffer of JPEGs than RAW files, so if you don’t mind losing a little editing flexibility, this can be a good option. Note that the write speed of the memory card is also a factor, so it’s a good idea to use the fastest card you can.

Fast and efficient autofocus. In order to capture spot-on focus of an animal that’s moving fast and unpredictably requires a sophisticated autofocus system with good coverage of points across the frame.

Lens or lens range. In order to fill the frame with the animal or bird, you’ll need to use telephoto lens range. A compact camera needs a decent zoom lens already attached, or find a bridge camera. For cameras with interchangeable-lens capability like DSLR or mirrorless, check out telephoto lenses available for the mount on the camera that are within your budget.

Best Cameras for Wildlife Photography

If you also enjoy landscape photography in addition to wildlife photography, check out the gear we use and recommend.

Landscape Photography Gear Resources

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