Thursday, 12 July 2012

Nature Project: Week Four

Since our activity (Sun Seekers) last Wednesday was rained out I made the initiative to enjoy whatever sun the rest of the week brought us. July in Manitoba delivered with heat, sun, and humidity. So, we enjoyed it. Several times actually.


Just a sampling of our sun seeking fun from last week: Getting sun screened up with Daddy for going on a trail walk (more on some awesome trails at a later date). Went on a loooong Sunday walk and hit a splash park on the way. Another day brought lots of play in our own backyard, including dinner al fresco. 

As I mentioned last week this week's activity would include Butterflies AND a field trip. I was stoked and planning this outing from the first time I skimmed the book's activities. Luckily for us our local Zoo added a Butterfly Garden as a new exhibit last year. For any more information on this truly lovely place please visit

For our experience though just keep on reading :)

We got up yesterday morning moderately early for us (that would be 8:30) and got gathered around and after a quick breakfast we were out the door. The Assiniboine Park Zoo is only a 15 minute drive away so it didn't take us long to get there. The Butterfly Garden is located within the Zoo so we figured we would take in a few other exhibits before we got to business...

My locator shot at the WRONG entrance.

My locator shot at the RIGHT entrance.

The peacocks wander around the whole zoo. This one was a real beauty. 
FYI: peacocks are nasty and greedy and like to stalk people for food. 

The boys LOVED seeing the Zebras. 
They are very into the Madagascar movies so seeing them was a real treat. 
Max kept calling them Marties. 

We didn't do the whole Zoo circuit but we did see Camels, Sea Eagles, Ocelots, and Tigers. We also saw the Lions. For the record watching a lion feeding while wearing a zebra print bag makes one feel just a smidgen' vulnerable. Just a smidgen'. 

It would have been nice to see more and get our admissions worth but it was getting hot and my bright idea of not bringing the stroller (just the carrier) was not so bright. So off we went to see the main purpose of our outing: Butterflies. 

The Butterfly exhibit is made up of two quonsets with a covering that resembles that of a greenhouse, but they weren't overly hot. They are joined by a gift shop that also houses the hatchery (we could actually see one breaking out of it's chrysalis).  External gardens made up the rest of the exhibit. It would have been nice to just be able to sit and soak it all in. Perhaps on a day to myself I will do that. 

While at the Butterfly Gardens we saw five different species and not one of them was our typical Painted Lady that we usually see in Manitoba (but apparently we have 155 different species in MB). I really wish I had some species names to add my pictures but alas I am no entomologist. If you follow me on Twitter though you may see that I have asked the Zoo and am hoping I can edit some names in here soon. 

This was the best picture I could get of this beautiful blue one. He just would not land. 
Kudos to my iPhone for actually snagging this so well. 

Oh and don't forget the ubiquitous Mammafly!

I am really happy that the book had this as an activity. I am not sure if it would have been something I would have thought of otherwise. Perhaps we would have wandered in on a possible trip to the Zoo but going there for the purpose of observing the Butterflies made it special. I know the boys enjoyed themselves. 

As far as the rest of the chapter on Butterflies we learned that they suck nectar through a straw like piece called a proboscis. We also learned that they are part of the insect family (six legs people). Another suggested activity was to make your own Butterfly Garden. Good thing I stumbled upon THIS! 

I am not sure what next week will bring. The book says that next up is Ladybugs but Vik is away all next week and I would hate to do the activity without him. Perhaps next week we will break and then reconvene the following week with TWO activities. I don't know.

But for now I shall bid you adieu until next post. 


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