Buying a Telescope for Bird Watching

If you’re just starting out on your bird watching hobby, then you will know that you need either binoculars or a telescope for bird watching. However, there are a few points you should be aware of when buying a telescope for bird watching.

Consider the expense: As a new bird watcher, you may not have a huge budget, but don’t worry, there are lots of different priced telescopes on the market and you could even get a second hand one. Bear in mind though that the more you pay the better your telescope will be.

Read the reviews: Although you can read reviews on Amazon, I would recommend that you buy a specialist magazine for the best opinions when buying a telescope for bird watching. You can always make your purchase from Amazon, usually at a saving on high street prices.

Portability: Unless you’re going to set up your telescope in your back yard or on your porch, you will need to think about transporting it. Sure, you can put a bulky one in your car, but you may have to carry it some distance when you reach your destination. If you intend to ramble round the countryside looking for birds, a lightweight, portable telescope is a good idea.

Tripod: It’s nearly impossible to use a telescope for bird watching without the aid of a tripod to hold the thing steady. This can be an additional expense but it really is essential. Your tripod should be sturdy but lightweight.

Focal length: Focal length is one of the most important considerations when buying a telescope for bird watching. Focal length is the distance from the main lens or mirror to the point at which light rays converge to form a sharp image. The longer the focal length, the greater the magnification.

Focal ratio: Focal ratio is the focal length divided by the aperture and it determines the brightness of the image on which you are focusing.

Interchangeable optics: Interchangeable optics or eye pieces can be used to change the magnification of your subject. If you want this facility, make sure that the telescope you buy will accommodate other brands of lenses.

Visit this page for a great selection of scopes in the lower price bracket or this page for a more expensive selection.

About 

Liz is an amateur bird watcher who has been as far afield as India and South Africa combining bird watching with spotting wild animals.

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