The camera on your smartphone might take high-quality pictures, but nothing compares to the feeling of dedicating an afternoon to photography with no distractions — just you and your camera. I love taking pictures of nature, as well as the animals that grace our beautiful planet.

Your ideal camera will depend on your budget, skillset and desired activities. Here are some cameras worth your investment if you’re passionate about wildlife photography.

  1. Nikon D5

The Nikon D5 is a point and shoot that features the best Nikon offers. However, with a price tag of nearly $6,500, it is probably not the best option for most. With the ability to clearly capture 12 frames per second, you won’t miss a shot. This camera is the best in terms of shooting in low light. Even with a very high ISO, your photos won’t be grainy. The downside to this camera is the weight. Because of the full-frame sensor, the body weighs 3.1 lbs.

  1. Canon EOS 7D Mark II Digital SLR

If you’re a fan of DSLRs, the Canon EOS 7D Mark II is a great option. You can currently find it for slightly over $1,000, making it a viable option for many photographers. Unlike more expensive Canon models, this model has an APS-C sensor instead of a full-size sensor. The upside to this sensor is that it allows for a lighter, more ergonomic design. It features Full HD 60p and a 20.2 megapixel sensor, so you will not be disappointed with picture quality.

  1. Nikon D7200 DX-format DSLR

If you’re looking for a quality camera for under $1,000, the Nikon D7200 DX-format DSLR will give you the most bang for your buck. At only 1.5 lbs, it is light enough for more active photographers, and the picture quality is impressive for an $800 camera. With a 100-25,600 ISO range for colored pictures and a 24.2 megapixel image sensor, you’ll be able to capture wildlife shots to be proud of. There is a newer version of this camera available now, but it is more expensive.

Luckily, emerging technology over the years has led to more high-quality cameras that won’t break the bank. This means we can have a collection of cameras for any occasion, and more people have the means to make photography their next hobby.

Whether you plan to capture images of birds in flight or just your dog playing in the backyard, I hope this short list helps you find the best camera to suit your wildlife photography needs.