How to Take Better Pictures of Wildlife During Wilderness Tours

Whether you’re an experienced photographer or simply an animal lover, our Wilderness Tours at Sointula Lodge is a great chance to capture some incredible shots of British Columbia’s wildlife! From orcas, whales, and dolphins in the waves below, to black bears and deer on the shoreline, to bald eagles soaring high above, there’s plenty to watch for everywhere you look.

But these elusive and beautiful animals usually won’t wait for you to turn on your camera, update your settings, and line up the perfect shot! If you’re dreaming of coming home from your trip with some display-worthy souvenir photos, you’ll want to do a little prep ahead of your trip.

Keep reading to learn a few tips to help you take better pictures of wildlife during your visit to Vancouver Island fishing lodges.

Be Prepared

There’s nothing worse than spotting an incredible animal — like an elusive coastal wolf — and pulling out your phone or camera to take a picture, only to find that it’s dead. Before you go to bed each evening during your trip, the most important thing that you can do is to make sure that your batteries are charged. If you know that your camera or cell phone battery will die quickly if you’re using it constantly throughout the day, consider bringing extra batteries or an external charger along to power up part-way through the day.

Take Advantage of Live Photos

You don’t need to have a fancy, expensive camera and different attachable lenses to get great pictures during your trip! Many smartphones today have great cameras that can capture wildlife shots that you’ll be proud to show off when you get back home. Another great feature that many smartphones have today is “live photo” mode.

This feature records the sound and movement 1.5 seconds before and 1.5 seconds after a shot is taken. The ability to choose your favorite image from the live photo is also provided by this feature.

Live photos are a great way to capture actions of shots of wildlife, like dolphins playing in the waves below or a bald eagle swooping towards the water from above. You can snap away during the moment. Then, afterward, review your live photos, and choose still images from each series that are clear and free from blur. Not only does this allow you to capture still images, but live photos are also great for reliving the moment later on in short video form!

Get Close Without Getting Too Close

During Wilderness Tours or an Ocean Fishing Tour with Sointula Lodge, you might get lucky enough to have a whale surface right beside your boat. While hiking along the shoreline, you might happen upon a group of sea lions sunning themselves on a rocky beach. But regardless of how calm or peaceful the wildlife that you encounter seems, it’s always important to keep your distance. Not only will this help keep you safe, but it helps ensure that you don’t cause unnecessary stress to the animals.

While you do need to keep your distance, you can use the zoom on your camera or smartphone to get a close look. Before your trip, play around with the zoom function, and see how the photos look. Depending on your device, zooming in too close to something can cause your image to be blurry. And if your camera or phone doesn’t have automated stabilization, you may need to have a tripod or monopod with you to keep your camera steady while you zoom in.

Consider Composition

Want to snap professional-quality wildlife pictures without having professional gear? One thing that makes a big difference is the composition of your photos.

You can improve the composition of your pictures by using the well-known “rule of thirds.” The idea of the rule of thirds is that you should always think about the image in your viewfinder (or on your phone screen), as being divided into three sections vertically and three sections horizontally. When you choose a subject, like an animal or even a mountain peak in the distance, aim to line up your subject on one of the horizontal or vertical lines separating the thirds of your photos.

Many cameras and phones have an option to add grids to your viewfinder or screen. But if you don’t have this feature, try to line up your image by sight alone. Keep in mind that you can also crop images later on to follow the rule of thirds. So don’t risk missing your shot because you’re busy trying to line up your shot perfectly!

Capturing Awesome Wildlife Photos During Wilderness Tours

Vancouver Island fishing lodges like Sointula Lodge are a great spot to capture stunning images of some of British Columbia’s incredible wildlife. Whether you have a professional camera and tons of gear or just your smartphone, with these simple tips, you can take home some stunning images that you’ll love to share with family and friends!

Do our Wilderness Tours sound like the perfect trip for you? Contact us today to start planning your Summer 2023 visit today!