It was a long hard winter and for many of the birds and smaller mammals the best place to be was as close to the bird feeders as possible. It was even better to mark off your territory and park yourself right in the middle of one, as the Mourning Dove in the above photo decided to do.
As I write this at 4:00 PM on May 2nd, the temperature sits at 86 degrees F. It's hard to believe that it was cold enough for snow flurries just this past Monday. Yet, it has been that kind of winter/spring. Hopefully, we are now on the path to more normal and consistent weather and temperatures which will allow the critters to concentrate on things other than scrounging for seed in the snow. After all, there are families to raise.
I captured all of the images on this page with the new Nikkor 70-200mm lens (Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR) which has to be one of the sharpest zoom lenses I have used. Its maximum focal length of 200mm, doesn't put it in the same focal range as a serious wildlife telephoto, however when images are cropped tight it retains every pixel of image sharpness. You can see this by comparing the original and cropped images of the squirrel below.
You can check out a review of this 70-200 lens here.