Newby/Shooting birds in flight.


TPF Noob!
Jan 5, 2009
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I was out today finally getting some time behind my new camera. I am a total newby and need some help. I was shooting some birds in flight using full auto. Everything in the picture was in focus except the bird which was a total blur. I am new and reading up on shutter speed and ISO and such but was wandering in general what settings should I use to try to capture some smaller birds in flight (faster flying not like a hawk gliding). I know I need to get out of full auto, I just don't know how to set it.
I would like to at least get close then I can fine tune, but the ones I got today you can hardly see the bird. I know broad general questions are not the easiest to answer but I hope to at least get close then I can post some pics and help get more advanced.
I came up with a couple ideas, 1 on full auto the shutter speed was to slow to capture the moving bird, or 2 I still have my camera set as it came with 7 focal points (or whatever they are called) and I should just go with one.

Yeah, work in shutter priority and set the shutter really fast. 1/1000 will freeze most birds perfectly. I find humming birds move so fast that I still get motion blur at 1/5000. Either way, if your bird is blurred it's because you're too slow on the shutter.
Well, if your shooting the birds in the sky, you can get away with a fast shutter speed.

Try The smallest aperture you can use, (that way, even if the camera misses the focus, youll still get a usuable shot.) and maybe 1/2000 of a second at ISO 200.
Im not completely sure about that, but im sure itll get you close enough that you can figure it out from there.

If the bird comes out black, open up the apurture or slow down the shutter speed. Dont go anything slower than 1/500 of a second. 1/1000 would be even better.
Thanks guys, I appreciate the help.

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