A good pair of binoculars or quality spotting scope is necessary to step up your birding game to see and identify more species in their natural environment.
Binoculars for Birding
There are a wide variety of binoculars and spotting scopes available for birding depending on your budget and needs. While many lower-priced options will be adequate for the average birder, if you really want to get the best experience it is worth buying what you can afford.
Tips for Using Binoculars
Just like with any tool, there is more to using binoculars properly than what meets the eye (pun intended ;). To get the best use out of your new set of optics, it is worth spending an hour or so learning how to properly use and maintain them to maximize your enjoyment from them for years to come.
Used by birders and hunters alike, spotting scopes are a versatile tool that provide more stable viewing than holding a pair of binoculars. They are typically more expensive than comparable magnification binoculars and are recommended for more advanced users.
The next step beyond observing your favorite bird species through a pair of binoculars is to take high-quality pictures of them with a camera. See our recommendations for wildlife cameras below.