Wildlife photography techniques from Canon Tutor, Brian Worley

Capturing nature using your IXUS or PowerShot

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© 'Quando a chuva para (When the rain stops)' taken on a Canon PowerShot A400 by Israel Freire

Use macro mode to photograph small wildlife

IXUS and PowerShot models have a handy macro focus function which is ideal for shooting close up photos of plants, ladybirds or hovering butterflies. It allows the camera lens to be closer to the subject so you can create images that appear to be larger than life on screen and in print.

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© 'Folhas pos-chuva (Leaves after the rain)' taken on a Canon PowerShot A400 by Israel Freire

Keep steady when taking close ups

When you're shooting close up photos of a delicate flower or a sleeping gecko, it's important to keep still. Remember that using the flash will be less effective as the lens is in between the flash and the subject and it could really scare your subject so use it with caution.

Using your zoom

IXUS / PowerShot cameras with large zoom lenses can capture great images from a greater distance. This is useful if you're photographing animals in places where you can't get too close to them, like photographing seals on a rocky coastline or the characterful expression of a slightly volatile swan.

Sharp shots

While many IXUS and PowerShot lenses have a built-in Image Stabilizer to ensure sharp shots, it's essential to hold your camera securely when capturing wildlife using the maximum zoom. Nobody will be impressed by blurry photos of a natterjack toad - no matter how rare they might be! Holding your camera in two hands or bracing it against a stable object will help you get sharper results without using a tripod.