Wildlife photography is no easy feat. Unlike other types of photography that require precision and clarity, wildlife photography is dynamic and needs the photographer to be a stealthy, keen observer with rapid movements and insurmountable patience. From flying birds to underwater wonders, the beauty of nature must be captured quickly and quietly.
To photograph animals efficiently, wildlife photographers use different types of lenses for every scene. They use rangefinder lenses to accurately lock in the focus when subjects are close up and zoom lenses for faraway subjects. Therefore, you must choose the perfect lens based on the situation, one that’s capable of taking high-quality pictures.
In this regard, Sony lenses are a smart choice. Not only do they deliver an artistic quality to your pictures, but they also have new innovative designs. Sony lenses ensure that you capture all features of a scene with utmost detail and clarity. These lenses come in a large variety, so you can choose one that suits your needs the best.
Professional wildlife photographers recommend Sony lenses to all aspiring wildlife photographers. These lenses are trustworthy and never fail to satisfy photographers when they’re out in the field.
Here are the best Sony lenses for wildlife photography:
Sony’s FE 70-200mm f/4 G OSS is compatible with E-mount full-frame cameras and E-mount APS-C cameras. The superior G-lens quality of this lens series gives a creamy, smooth, and mesmerizing bokeh background. The Sonys 70-200mm f/4 G covers shots from corner to corner, unlike other ordinary mid-range zoom lenses, and gives clear and sharp photos.
This lens is more suitable if you’re covering vast field areas. The advanced aspherical (AA) optics and 9-blade circular aperture give you outstanding results with smooth shots of open spaces, which often tend to get grainy. The f/4 zooming feature works best if you’re operating with bright backgrounds like open forests and snowfields.
The f/4 zoom collects maximum light while removing the blur and gives a creamy texture to the light backgrounds. The lightweight, compact size makes it easier to control the adjustments, and the internal focusing keeps lens length constant. Its Optical SteadyShot image stabilization reduces the blur, which usually occurs in fast capture.
2. Sony 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G OSS (Overall Winner)
At the top of our list of the best Sony lenses for wildlife photography is the Sony 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G OSS. This lens is a part of Sony’s creative G-series and is compatible with the same camera range as that of the above lens. The difference is that Sony’s 70-300 mm gives an extended range in FE zoom. On an APS-C camera, the 300 mm becomes a 450 mm telephoto. It offers the same classic creamy background bokeh with high resolution and zooming range of f/4.5-5.6.
This lens’ minimum focus distance of 2.95 feet and a maximum magnification of 0.31x lets you capture the details closely with outstanding precise results. Equipped with a linear actuator, you can enhance your autofocus. This built-in optical SteadyShot optimization minimizes the blur, which occurs in shaky movements.
This Sony lens comes with a versatile range of adjustments that are easy to control. It has a lock-in focus that eases the challenges in speed shots. The lens functions well in low light and gives crisp, clear images.
The Sony FE 100-400mm f/4.5-4.6 GM OSS super-telephoto is by far the top performer in the G-series. Its 100-400mm focal length is ideal for wildlife photography. The maximum aperture of f/4.5-5.6 controls the light in a picture and gives accurate results in images. The GM lens offers a high resolution that’s consistent throughout any focus distance.
The Nano AR Coating reduces flare and reflections that are produced in brightly lit backgrounds. This lens works competently in low-light as well. This is the first Alpha lens to include a zoom smoothness adjuster where you can easily customize the settings with simple hand movements. The optical image stabilization helps you capture fast-moving scenario with stunning precision.
The Sony Alpha FE 16-35mm f/2.8 GM operates well for both near and distant subjects. This lens has a wide-angle zoom of 16-35mm that captures bright and sharp portraitures. The f/2.8, accompanied by high-end resolution, provides an excellent contrast of landscapes and tall architecture. You can get a nice bokeh effect by shooting at f/2.8. At this point, the lens will focus precisely on the near subjects and smooth out the background, revealing a striking image.
The two DDSSM (Direct Drive SSM) systems are installed for accurate, rapid, and stealthy focus. They give you ample opportunity to shoot movies as well as stills. The Nano AR system eliminates flare and annoying reflections without compromising the color contrast of the photos. The 11-blade circular aperture further enhances the smooth bokeh texture. The Sony Alpha FE 16-35mm f/2.8 GM is light, compact, and portable, with easy manual control so you can easily carry it through steep mountain ranges and valleys.
The 24-240mm range is ideal for both indoor and outdoor shots. For wildlife, the Sony FE 24-240mm f/3.5-6.3 OSS is perfect for capturing subjects at a distance in low-light. The Optical SteadyShot (OSS) gives you crisp, precise results when you use the lens to shoot night-scenes.
The high resolution, with an advanced linear motor, improves the focusing mechanism for quick, smooth control throughout the extended zoom range. The resolution is consistent with a versatile range of fast apertures f/3.5-5.6. With this lens, you can fully enjoy the experience without compromising the quality or result of the images.
The most impressive quality of the Sony FE 90mm f/2.8 macro lens is its quick and ultra-quiet autofocus, which lets you lock onto faraway subjects with absolute precision. The 90mm wide-angle focus coupled with a fast shutter aperture of f/2.8 guarantees a gorgeous bokeh effect to portraits. The lens’ compact floating focus mechanism maintains proper focus throughout the shot image.
Its fast auto/manual focus-switch helps you shift the focus mode without losing the shot. The medium telephoto lens captures impressive photos of small insects and functions smoothly at any working distance. The Focus Range Limiter selector can be set for near or far focusing, depending on the subject so you can maximize the autofocus speed according to your shot.
With the inner-focusing system, the total length of the lens does not alter for any changed settings. The filter thread in front of the lens does not rotate, which is an advantage when using a polarizing filter.
Incorporated with advanced aspherical technology, the Sony FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS is one of the most ideal lenses for wildlife photography. This lens has an aperture range of f/5.6-6.3 and has ED (Extra-low Dispersion), which suppresses all color distortions in the image while maintaining consistent high-level resolution at all focus points.
The 11-blade circular aperture mechanism gives you full creative control over the bokeh effect. The lens is geared with Sony’s traditional innovative DDSSM for fast, accurate focusing high positioning so you can capture the fluid moments of nature without sacrificing any second to take the perfect shot. It has a three-mode OSS, which allows you to take rapid shots clearly with crisp and sharp image results.
The Sony 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3’s zoom is entirely internal, so its dimensions don’t change based on the focal length. The lens is equipped with easy maneuverable controls, so you wouldn’t need to miss that perfect shot while making adjustments to the focus or aperture.
8. Sony Alpha FE 85mm f/1.8 (Budget Winner)
Sony lenses for wildlife photography don’t have to be expensive. The Sony Alpha FE 85mm f/1.8 is our budget pick as it performs and offers reliable coverage. The length of the lens remains constant throughout the focus range, while the focus ring operates smoothly. You can also change the aperture settings from a maximum of f/1.8 in extremely low-lit locations to f/22 for scenes with extreme brightness.
You can create a bokeh appeal by using the well-designed mid-range telephoto prime lens feature. A double linear motor system drives the focus mechanism without obstructing any other settings so you can get your shots smoothly and quietly.
This lightweight lens is portable and comes with a customizable focus hold button so you don’t have to pack extra gear to get better shots. Manual adjustments like a wide and responsive focus ring make it easier for you to control the lens.
Choosing Sony Lenses for Wildlife Photography
Sony offers a remarkable range of versatile lenses. Each of them exceeds in quality and provides the best features. By using these Sony lenses for wildlife photography, you can capture nature scenes flawlessly. Use our list to find the lens best suited to your needs.