Birding is one of the fastest-growing hobbies around the world. Why? Because it is simple to do, entertaining, and a great way to get out in nature. It may be your ticket to falling in love with the outdoors. Birds are also beautiful creatures that can be found in almost every habitat, including urban spaces. Once you start looking at birds more closely, you will see what all the fuss is about. But for that, you will need a proper pair of binoculars.
Size and Weight
It may not seem so, but the size and weight of binoculars are one of the most important factors, as you do not want to have heavy binoculars strapped around your neck, or keep them in your bag, for several hours. Compact and pocket binoculars would therefore be a great choice for birding, as they are lightweight and easy to carry.
When observing birds, it does seem logical to get closer for the best possible view, but you do not want to get too close and scare the animal away. That is why most new birders naturally assume that they need the biggest magnification they can get. Yet, this is not true. There are many disadvantages to having high magnification, two of them being a narrow field of view and an image that is not as bright. That is why the best magnification to get is 7x, 8x, or 10x. Most birders swear by the 10×42 configuration for their binoculars.
Source: Bird Watching HQ
Field of View
To become an expert in birding, you will need years of practice, and a great field of view. The way field of view on birding binoculars works is the wider, the better, as that way, you will spot the bird more quickly. This is also more true for birds who move around more, and you have to constantly be aware and ready.
Once you get familiarized with birding, you will never perceive the world the same again, as even a simple walk in a park can turn into analyzing bird calls. If you wear eyeglasses and want to keep them on while observing, eye relief is important, and you should be looking at an eye relief of at least 15 mm. However, longer eye relief equals a narrower field of view.
Fog and Waterproofing
In order to find a bird, you have to follow a lot of the same strategies that a hunter does when tracking an animal – for example, being at the right place at the right time. Birding will bring you to some extremely fascinating places, however, some may not provide the best possible conditions. There is a likely chance that your binos will be exposed to fog and water, thus it is a big advantage to have O-ring sealed binoculars, purged with either nitrogen or argon.
Most people are of the opinion that birds are extremely interesting creatures and that their behavior is worth observing. So why not do so by observing them more up close? You can do it anywhere, and at any time. You just need determination, a pair of binoculars, a guidebook, a waterproof notebook, and a pen.
is an experienced author from the field of sports optics. He writes articles and reviews about binoculars, spotting scopes, rifle scopes, long range shooting and other topics for magazines like Lovec and Optics-Info.com blog. Currently, he is a member of Optics Trade team.