I tend to lean to Canon myself. From other discussions I have with photographers there isn't a difference in quality and the lenses do not cost as much. Reason some pick Nikon and some Canon, it is what they are used to using.
Nothing wrong with Nikon but be prepared to spend a pile of money if you want good glass. Camera is only the small $ part in DSLR . If you want a good lens for wildlife in Nikon be prepared to spend $5000.00 on up just for glass . If you can by all means go for it !
crappie fever is right on.......I have Nikon, because I've used Nikon optics for many years and I happy with them. Plus i do not know (personally) any one that has Canon, only Nikon. So I could not physically compare the two....I do know that they both have great quality DLSR's.
Camera body/sensor comparable. Glass=large advantage to Nikon. Cant shoot truly professional quality photos without good glass. Good glass=more cash.
Think about what you want in your pics and pay accordingly.
The D5000 is a good starter camera. Yeah Nikon glass is going cost you more money But it the best Glass you can buy
You can buy a Canon and still use Nikon glass but you can buy a Nikon and use Canon glass...... But really you can't go wrong with Nikon or Canon they both are able to take outstanding photo's!
I can't speak for Canon. I have a Nikon D40X and a D300 I just got the D300 the other day. I had the D40X for three years and it a great camera I have the 70-300mm Vr lens for it, its a great lens for about 600 bucks(little less). If your going get the D5000 I would get the 70-300mm VR lens also it's well worth the money. I'll PM you a link to my web-site all photo's were taken with the D40X and the 18-55mm and the 70-300mm Vr lens.
Read up all you can and compare them. You will find the Nikon and Canon's almost identical.
When I recently purchased mine I was soooo close to buying the Nikon D5000 too or a Canon T1i until I seen them in person.
Get yourself to a camera store, to where you can physically compare and hold the 2.
That's what changed my mind.
At first I wanted the Nikon but then I preferred the Canon T1i after holding the 2.
I bought the Canon T1i.
Then, instead of getting the camera with the 2 kit lenses as they sell the package, I opted to by just the Canon body and purchased a Tamron 18-270mm macro lense.
Not saying it is the best glass available, but it was in my budget and it was more versatile for my uses. I didn't want to keep swapping out 2 lenses all the time.
Another thing maybe buy a used Body I bought both my D40X and D300 used it can save you a some money that you could you for a better lens. B&H,Adorama both has a used store or even look on ebay you can find good deal on a used body that somebody might be upgrade. A lot of the DSLR's shutter is rated a 150,000 before they fail. So if you can find something with low shutter for a lower price I would do it.