News and Writing from WildPhotographer Nick Wilcox-Brown

News and Views

How many megapixels do I need for Bird photography?


This question came up on Quora and I thought it may be useful to repeat my answer here

A minimum of 12Mp to is needed make a decent print. Beyond that, anything is plenty. The key to good Bird Photography is your choice of lens: plenty of reach, good stabilisation and excellent autofocus.

One of the biggest mistakes is to believe that using a super high megapixel camera will give you great images. Better to use a lighter, portable and more affordable Micro Four Thirds (MFT) system camera with ‘more bang for the buck’ in terms of lenses, to get closer to your subject, than to have a distant spot in the picture and to crop afterwards to make it bigger.

A 300mm lens on an MFT camera like an OM-1 is equivalent to 600mm on a high megapixel full frame camera, so you are already twice as close to the bird. MFT cameras from brands like OM System have incredibly good stabilisation and the lenses are light, so you don’t need a bulky tripod.

Options like Bird detect in the AF system are like cheating when you use them for the first time and they make bird photography far easier, even when birds are moving fast in flight like the Oystercatcher below:

Nick 1st December ’23

If your want to know more about workshops on cameras and settings, post-production with Adobe Lightroom or Photoshop or any of our holidays, please [Message me](https://wildphotographer.co.uk

Our Wild Photography Workshops and Holidays

Wildlife in Scotland
Raptors in Snow
Bears and Raptors in Autumn
OM SYSTEM training
East African Wildlife
Lightroom training
Birds and Wildlife of Eastern Spain
Goshawk and Black Grouse in Finland

Available Dates and Places on our bird and wildlife photography holidays

Scotland Birds, Wildlife & Scenery May 11-15th 2024. 2 Places remaining

Swarovski & OM System Hands On Day WWT Slimbridge, 21st May 2024

Spain Birds of Plains and Mountains May 28-2nd June 2024. Fully Booked

Scotland Birds, Wildlife & Scenery August 26-30th 2024. Available

Finland Autumn Bears and Eagles Sep 24-29th 20204. Only 2 places left

Uganda African Birds and Wildlife 28th October - 6th November 2024. 2 places remaining

Scotland Birds, Wildlife & Scenery. Mountain Hare special 6 -10 January 2025 . 2 Places available

Finland Raptors in Snow Feb 26-3rd March 2025. Available

All our day training and bespoke camera / post-production workshops are available as normal.

Stacks Image 167

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