And if I look around online or in real life, my experience tells me that I’m one of the few using FujiFilm for this kind of photography. The main reason is that FujiFilm doesn’t have long focal length lenses in their collection besides the 100-400mm or 70-300mm lenses.
If I check the focal length of most of my bird photos taken with the Fujifilm X-T3 camera and Fujinon XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR lens, most of the time, I’m using it completely zoomed in, and that’s 400mm. It means that cropping is necessary during post-production to get the subject closer, especially for small birds.
Yes, I could use a Fujinon XF1.4X TC WR extender to increase the focal length to 560mm, but that would make the image slightly softer at 560mm, and then I would lose a full stop of light.
When writing this blog, Fujifilm has no solution for longer focal length lenses besides the 100-400mm.
But there are rumours!
There are rumours that FujiFilm will launch a Fujinon XF 150-600mm lens in 2022! If this is true, I’m going to order it already ;-). Although I wish they would produce a prime 600mm lens instead.
The second rumour is that Sigma is working on Fujifilm compatible lenses, and knowing that they have already a couple of good Tele lenses in their segment, that’s excellent news. But I will be sticking to the Fujinon brand.
Update: The rumour was true! See lens roadmap below.
So, the short answer to the question if FujiFilm is ready for bird photography is:
YES! Definitely with the upcoming 150-600mm lens! And the cropping quality will be even better if the next camera (X-T5?) has more than 40Mpx.