My Visit to The Victoria Butterfly Garden

 

Needing some R&R, this month (March 2007) I took a Ferry to Vancouver Island and stayed 5 nights at a wonderful inn - The Miraloma Inn on the Cove in Sidney B.C. While on the Island there were two sites I very much wanted to visit.  First on my list was The Victoria Butterfly Garden, and then the following day I visited the world famous Victoria Buchart Gardens.  Having never visited either garden in the past, this was a very special treat.  As I entered the Butterfly garden area, I was immediately aware of the high humidity which soon caused my video camera to fog up.  Fortunately most of my digital pics are clearer (now I didn't say "focus", just clearer, sigh...from now on, I'm bringing my tripod!)  I was surprised at how noisy it was.  I suppose I expected to enter a very serene, hush, hush sort of environment, but not so - this garden has many fountains, several large ponds and quite a variety of birds and fish such as Koi. and Goldfish. I heard loud honking noise, similar to that of geese, but I soon discovered the honking came from Flamingos.  But wait - wasn't this suppose to be a Butterfly Garden! It is much more in fact - it is an exotic rainforest environment with over 250 different tropical plants provide beauty and function in the gardens.  "Many of the plants in the gardens are “host plants”. These are plants that support one or more species of butterflies through out their life cycle. The butterfly will lay its eggs on the leaves, the caterpillar will emerge from the egg and feast on the foliage, and then when it is ready, form it’s chrysalis on the plant as well. As well, there are “food plants”, on which the butterflies will feed after emerging from their chrysalides. At times the blooms on these plants are supplemented in providing nectar for the butterflies by our staff placing trays of sliced fruit covered with a piece of screening throughout the gardens. This allows the butterflies to use their proboscis to suck sugars from the fermenting fruit, quite a diet for these special butterflies."  There are over 3,000 butterflies (up to 50 different species) that fly freely in this 12,000 sq. foot greenhouse. Visitors see the all the stages of a butterfly's life, from the smallest egg, to the newly born. I was surprised to learn that the life span of many butterflies is only 4 weeks or less. For more information on this Butterfly Garden, go to http://www.butterflygardens.com/learn_gardens.html Their page provides wonderful educational material for young and old alike. At the end of this page I will provide other links.  I'm sorry I wasn't able to ID all the formal names of the various butterflies and birds I took photos of. While I'm not a lepidopteran, I am hooked and hope to see them visit my garden! ~ Please scroll through the slide show & enjoy! (You will need to adjust your screen after you click on each thumb print if you want to see the whole picture and read a brief description in the captions below the photos. (I will provide links to more of my photos, soon) Cheryl Eckstein March 2007

.

What is Canada's national insect? (answer, next slide)

This is a White Nymph ~see it's body is the same design and color as its wings

.

What is a lepidopterist? (hint, see next slide)

These were behind glass, see the golden Tethoreias

This page was added Wednesday March 14, 2007; since that date you are visitor Hit Counter

Return to  COMPASSIONATE HEALTHCARE NETWORK (CHN) HOME    Thank you, I hope you enjoyed your visit

______