Stephen Steiner , Feb 02, 2004; 05:18 p.m.
There is no "best" lens. It depends on a number of factors, such as the kind of wildlife you are shooting and how close you can get. That said, IMO, the best all-around such lens is the 500/4 L IS (Canon), especially if you also photograph birds (small birds might also require the 1.4 TC). If it were possible, I would also carry the 300/2.8 L
IS is the best thing ever to happen to long telephotos, even tripod mounted, as it provides an effective two stop difference.
If you think "using a mono/tripod a pain for action shots" when shooting a long telephoto, get used to unsharp images.