Tips – Birdwatching


Beginers tips:

Know your binoculars

Know your binoculars

Before using your binoculars, it is important to adjust them so they compensate for the differing strengths of your two eyes. Take a lens cap and cover up the right objective lens with it. Then look through the left lens and focus on an object 30 feet away using the main focusing knob located between the two barrels of your binoculars.

Once you have focused on the object, move the lens cap from the right lens to the left lens. Look through the right lens at the same object (but don’t touch the main focusing wheel!) If the image you see is not as clear as it looked through the left lens, adjust it using the focusing ring attached to the right eyepiece of your binoculars. Take note of where you have set the focus on the right eyepiece. Now your binoculars are adjusted to your eyes and ready for action.

Next, spend some time developing the hand-eye coordination you’ll need to spot birds quickly. Most bird watching is definitely not like watching football. With bird watching there’s much more action – everything is happening at 1/100 the scale and moves 100 times as quickly over an unlimited expanse of space. It takes time for beginning birders to get the knack of spotting birds with their binoculars. The secret is to learn to spot a bird with the naked eye and then lift the binoculars up to your eyes without ever taking your eyes off the bird.

Find a comfortable spot at a local park and spend time just practicing spotting objects with your binoculars. Initially, set the focus lever on the binoculars so that an object approximately 30 feet away is in clear view. This is a good average distance from which you can learn to focus the binoculars in and out.

Then begin to look for birds with your naked eyes and then find them with your binoculars. Simply follow the bird around for a while, lowering and lifting your binoculars every so often. Don’t worry about identifying birds yet. Just watch what they are doing. Soon, you’ll be able to spot and focus like a pro.


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