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Hey, in a pinch I will use a 400 DO. Could not have got this shot with a 300 f2.8, 400 f2.8, 500 f4, or a 200-400, because they are all too bloody (pardon the Aussie slang) heavy for me.
The best lens is the one that the photographer has the best ability to use.
Always like seeing your 400mm DO shots...since I use my 400 DO mainly for motorsports, I like to see some variety of what it can do.
As much as I would love the 200-400, the thought of lugging something that heavy over my shoulder around a racetrack in the summer makes me start to sweat sitting here, and I run 4-5 miles a day outdoors. Granted, part of the problem is me, as I also don't like using a monopod if I can avoid it. Personal preference.
I'm not a birder, but it seems like the strategy involves less moving around and more finding a good spot, and waiting for the action in a predetermined area. In this situation, I could definately see where a 200-400 would be a huge benefit. And after recently picking up a 6D to complement my 7D, the ISO on these new full frames is so good, I can't imagine f/4 being a problem with something like a 1DX unless you're shooting in the dark.