We want to give you as many tips as possible to photograph wildlife this winter and luckily you don’t have to travel too far to spot photogenic wildlife, it could be right on your doorstep!
The thought of going outdoors for your photography when the UK weather is at such low temperatures might make you shudder – quite literally – but now is a great time to photograph wildlife. During the winter season the likes of squirrels, birds and foxes will be out and about searching for whatever food they can. By providing a source of food in your own back garden you’ll not only be helping wildlife, but it will also give you a great opportunity to photograph them.
Just remember that if you do start to feed wildlife, it’s a good idea to commit to keep it going throughout the winter as I will become a reliable source for them.
Blurred backdrop. Choose your lens’ widest aperture; this will allow you to create a soft blurred background and make your subject really stand out. A blurred background can also help to get rid of distracting elements that may make your image look cluttered.
Speedy Snapper. If you’ve ever spotted a squirrel in a tree you’ll notice how quickly they can scurry off out of sight. If your camera has continuous shooting mode – also known as burst mode – switch to this so you can capture multiple frames while holding down the shutter. This will enable you to capture a number of images before your subject disappears.
See clearly. Shooting through a window or conservatory will allow you to photograph from a distance and keep an eye on wildlife that comes into your garden. Make sure that the glass is clean and then place your lens right up against it; this will help to avoid there being reflections on your shots. You could also place a black piece of cloth or clothing around the lens to further help get rid of reflections.
Wildlife Geek. Patience is key when it comes to wildlife photography. It may take several days before wildlife appears and then it may take longer for you to get that perfect shot. Pay attention to your subject and monitor it’s behaviour so you can anticipate it’s movements and be ready for the shot.
Oh, so quiet. Some animals such as deer and birds can be more skittish than others and may be more aware of your presence, making it much harder to photograh them. If you’ve set up a food supply, bird table or feeder you may find it useful to shoot removetly. Mount your camera to a tripod, frame your shot and then head inside. Wireless triggers will allow you to fire the shutter, but many cameras that features Wi-Fi will allow you to do this via your mobile.
If you’re interested more in photographing Wildlife, we have a fantastic Academy British Wildlife photography course based in the British wildlife centre in Devon. Click here for more info.