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Victoria Butterfly Gardens
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Victoria's Butterfly Gardens, Part 2: Blue Morpho and More! (+9 insets)

Victoria's Butterfly Gardens, Part 2: Blue Morpho and More! (+9 insets)
(+9 insets!) (Please scroll down to "Today's Pictures" for image information)

Trip Talk: Victoria Butterfly Gardens...the Main Exhibit!

Steve ended up pulling me out of the Insectarium by my ear because I was totally entranced by all of the unusual critters! Still dazed, I went through the next set of doors into the main exhibit and stopped in my tracks. Listed as being the size of three basketball courts, this indoor jungle was also at least two stories tall and filled with sky lights to add illumination. I didn't realize how tropical and lush this place would be! Everywhere I looked there were plants and vines, flowers and thick, leafy undergrowth.

And there were butterflies…everywhere! Flying around, resting on plants and feeding at the various fruit and nectar stations, you couldn't miss them! Steve and I immediately lost ourselves behind our cameras as we focused in on one subject after another.

We read there were up to 70 species of butterflies on display at all times and we were dazzled by all of the different colors and combinations, sizes and activity levels of the countless "flying flowers". Next to the entrance was a small building which housed rows of cocoons and picture of some of the species. However, apparently they gave up trying to keep track because there were images for only some of the butterflies that we saw.

There was a cement path that meandered around the entire enclosure, crossing over bridges and tucking into nooks and crannies. A map showed the many highlights that you could visit—various butterfly feeding stations, the "emerging window" that I shared pictures of yesterday, a caterpillar viewing area, but there was so much more to see than just butterflies! A pair of flamingoes, tortoises and turtles, a dart frog exhibit (which I didn't notice, boo!), a pair of macaws and many free-flying birds of various sizes and types. The plants and accompanying flowers growing there could be their own attraction—I couldn't begin to count the vast number of tropical species from around the world which thrived everywhere I turned. In one area of the path they even had a host of carnivorous pitcher plants which hung down from many vines. I was totally enchanted!

Today's Pictures
My main picture today shows the closed wing formation of a Blue Morpho butterfly! It's hard to believe that the other side of these wings are a dazzling metallic blue! These incredible beauties are among the largest species in the world with wings that stretch from between five and eight inches wide. I was surprised to learn that there are actually 29 different species and 147 subspecies which are found in the Americas as far north as Mexico. When Steve and I visited Costa Rica many years ago, we visited the Monteverde Butterfly Gardens and saw Blue Morphos for the first time. There were many other butterflies there but the Blue Morphos stole the show with their amazing size and gleaming color.

Inset 1: This is a cropped close-up portrait of the previous Blue Morpho image.

Inset 2: Closer still, the wonderful scales of a butterfly's wings is remarkable to see!

Inset 3: I tried to get some good pictures of open-winged Blue Morphos but they were too active and skittish, or else they were too far away. This bedraggled beauty was definitely in its twilight hours as it sat exhausted on the ground but I was happy to immortalize it in a picture and delighted to share it with all of you! :)

Inset 4: A pair of very content flamingos make their home at the Gardens and reminded me of the trip we took to a bird sanctuary in Camargue, France when we went to Provence a couple of years ago. Someday I'll post some pictures but this pair of flamingoes do the job quite nicely for now! :)

Inset 5: All around the Gardens were bushes bristling with beautiful "red boas" and I discovered they are aptly called Chenille Plants. Chenille is French for caterpillar and it's also a type of velvety yarn. A perfect name for this lovely tropical bush, and I couldn't get enough of them! If you're wondering, they are just as soft as they look and I probably looked like a weirdo because I kept petting the flowers! :D

Inset 6: The lovely plants were everywhere, including this colorful Croton. What a beautiful leaf!

Inset 7: This is a pitcher plant, which hung down from vines that streamed all over one part of the Garden's path. Did you know there are over 170 species of these fascinating carnivores? Most are found in the tropics but there are some that grow here in Oregon! (Here are pictures from my visit to Darlingtonia State Natural Site …clicking on a picture opens the gallery.)

Inset 8: This is another picture of a pitcher plant with a lovely russet tone. (The "tail" I pointed out is actually the cap to the pitcher that's folded back...but all I can see is a tail! :D)

Inset 9: Finally, here's a group of pitcher plants hanging down, aren't they cool?! :)

Pam, have you gotten the chance to see a Blue Morpho butterfly when you've been to a butterfly garden? They really are completely breathtaking. When we saw them at an exhibit in Costa Rica, we just about fell over because there were so many of them! They landed on us and slowly opened and closed their wings, crawling around. Exhilarating! Here's hoping you are having a good day--it's starting to get frosty on some mornings, SO COLD! Then the sun warms everything up and by the afternoon it's hot if you're standing still in the sun! CRAZY!

Explored on 10/29/19; highest placement #1.

Brunot, Murray Leshner (Murrayatuptown), Kama 56, sunlight and 79 other people have particularly liked this photo


63 comments - The latest ones
 Helmer Lortz
Helmer Lortz club
WOW!!! Eine grandiose Serie. Die Schärfe der Makros ist beeindruckend, tolle Arbeit Janet!
8 months ago.
 Ko Hummel
Ko Hummel club
a great series, beautiful
8 months ago.
 Boro
Boro
Superbe série *******
8 months ago.
 Anke Brehm
Anke Brehm club
Wow...tolle Nähe und Schärfe.
8 months ago.
 uwschu
uwschu club
Diese Aufnahme ist TOP, Janet!
Was für eindrucksvolle Detals
8 months ago.
 Malik Raoulda
Malik Raoulda club
Toujours aussi ahurissant et superbement rendue. Une série vraiment remarquable
Bonne fin de soirée.
8 months ago.
 Malik Raoulda
Malik Raoulda club
Toujours aussi ahurissant et superbement rendue.
Une série vraiment remarquable
Bonne fin de soirée.
8 months ago.
 protox
protox club
Herrlich
8 months ago.
 Nicole Merdrignac
Nicole Merdrignac club
Superbe photo avec notes. Nicole.
8 months ago.
 Dominique 60
Dominique 60 club
du très grand art cette photo et ses notes janet ..... félicitations !!
8 months ago.
 Ronald Losure
Ronald Losure club
Beautiful photos, Janet. I especially like the extreme close-up of the Morpho wings. I also wonder whether the fuzzy caterpillar-like things on the pitcher plants are some sort of bait.
8 months ago.
 Maria W.
Maria W. club
Fantazia papilio!!! Super foto!!! Salutojn Janet:)))
8 months ago.
 Ulrich John
Ulrich John club
Großartig, Janet ! Wow !
8 months ago.
 Shmoo
Shmoo
she's a beauty!
8 months ago.
 Peter Castell
Peter Castell club
A wonderful set of 'eyes' to fool a predator, a marvellous place to visit Janet
8 months ago.
 Roger (Grisly)
Roger (Grisly) club
Magical series well up to you usual high standard Janet
8 months ago.
 tiabunna
tiabunna club
Another beautiful series, Janet. The detail in image#2 is marvellous.

Thank you very much for your kind comment on my Bergen images. I'm glad to report that my wife's operation seems to have gone well and she looked very cheery when I visited. We should be heading home in a few days.
8 months ago.
 Claudia G
Claudia G club
Il est vraiment très beau et difficile à attraper celui-là, bravo !
8 months ago.
 Jenny McIntyre
Jenny McIntyre club
OMG Janet - your pictures are simply stunning. Your macros are unbelievable, especially this one of the Blue Morpho. The wings look as if they've been sewn with silken thread. It's amazing that they have beautiful blue on the top of the wings and a pale brown on the undersides.

As for those pitcher plants - it looks as if there are fuzzy caterpillars crawling up them. They're fascinating plants.
8 months ago.
 Betty JW
Betty JW club
Beautiful photo and subject! Thank you for sharing in "Birds, Butterflies, Insects on Blooms, Dragonflies".
8 months ago.
 José Manuel Polo
José Manuel Polo club
Bueno con este trabajo no tengo adjetivos para describir su perfección. Mejor casi imposible.
8 months ago.
 William Sutherland
William Sutherland club
Amazing shots!

Admired in:
www.ipernity.com/group/tolerance
8 months ago.
 Ruesterstaude
Ruesterstaude club
Gratulation, Janet, deine Makros sind nicht zu übertreffen. Kannst du mal verraten, wie du die so schön scharf bekommst?
8 months ago.
Janet Brien club has replied to Ruesterstaude club
Lots of luck!! And a lens that includes stabilization...and a steady hand. Mostly though...LUCK!!
8 months ago.
 RHH
RHH club
Those are amazing photos, Janet. Love the close-up photo of the butterfly's scales. The Morphos are incredible. You see them with their wings folded and they are very beautiful but a quiet beauty, and then they spread their wings and fly..... There's a butterfly garden and botanical garden in Devon near Edmonton (University of Alberta) and it is within walking distance of our kids there, so we often go when we are visiting, but we've seen them too in the Science Center's butterfly garden in Seattle. Here's a few photos: www.ipernity.com/doc/162835/16808881, www.ipernity.com/doc/162835/17846759, www.ipernity.com/doc/162835/17507099

Loved the other photos too with the lead photo of a butterfly. What a wonderful place that garden must be. We'll just have to make a trip to Victoria, I guess. Those insect photos are magnificent and i love the Bromeliad photo. Used to have a huge collection of Brromeliads but gave them all away when we left Houston for Ireland. They are almost as fascinating and varied as Orchids.

I looked up your photos from the Darlingtonia site. We always stop there when in the atrea but usually get most of our photos at another site on the Redwoods Highway (still in California) and then way up a forest service road on the CA/OR border and at a place near Grant's Pass. Our favorite spot, though, is on the other side of the mountains near Mount Vernon, a floating bog that you can walk on where someone has transplanted Purple, Yellow and White Pitcher Plants, Venus Flytraps and where there are thousands of a native Sundew. We haven't been there for a few years but you can find the photos I took there in the album for carnivorous plants or by searching for Summer Lake.

This place also has a floating island that blows back and forth across the lake. It's an old lumber raft that now has trees growing on it. We also go there to pick native cranberries in the fall. It's a bit difficult to get out on the floating bog without getting wet and Nancy doesn't really like it, but I think it's wonderful. There are supposed to be Darlingtonia there, too, but we've never found them. They are not native but transplanted. The other carnivorous plants have established themselves and form huge and impressive clumps. Just thinking about the place makes me want to go back.

Thanks for your comments on the lakeshore photos. The only reason I would want to live in Michigan again is for the sake of doing photography along the lake and doing it with my youngest brother. I was raised there but wouldn't go back except for that and for family. He's an excellent photographer - really skilled at astral photography - and travels a lot. Used to be on Ipernity but is no longer, regretfully. Another brother still has photos on Ipernity but hasn't been posting lately: www.ipernity.com/home/2136888. Both of them do most of their posting on Facebook which I refuse to do. Hate Facebook.

To bed early, though. Nancy is visiting Neal (he usually comes here on Tuesday but didn't because I was traveling. Soon as she gets back I'm off to Lily White's party.
8 months ago.
 Esther
Esther club
They are all lovely, but my favorite is the close-up of the wings. What an amazing photo.
8 months ago.
 Pam J
Pam J club
INCREDIBLE PHOTOS !! BUTTERFLIES ARE A MARVEL OF NATURE.

I HAVE SEEN ONE AT A BUTTERFLY PARK ONCE, I CONSIDER IT A PRIVILEGE

HUGSSSSSSSSSSSSS
8 months ago.
 Kawasirius
Kawasirius club
Formidable série avec ces macros et aux détails incroyablement beaux . Du grand art !
Bonne journée, Janet !
8 months ago.
 Wierd Folkersma
Wierd Folkersma club
a beauty and a great set of pictures
8 months ago.
 John Cass
John Cass club
Brilliant capture, superb detail and wonderful PiP's.
8 months ago.
 Jaap van 't Veen
Jaap van 't Veen club
Awesome close-up with stunning - and razor sharp - details Janet.
8 months ago.
 Treasa Ui Cionaodha
Treasa Ui Cionaodha club
Stunning capture of this butterfly. Tack sharp details. Great series of PIPs also. Well done Janet Regards Tess.
8 months ago.
 Treasa Ui Cionaodha
Treasa Ui Cionaodha club
Back to say Congratulations in Explore. Well deserved for this image.
8 months ago.
 neira-Dan
neira-Dan club
Je suis béate d'admiration devant cette série ; et ce papillon est une merveille
8 months ago.
 Annemarie
Annemarie club
perfection!
hugs
8 months ago.
 Rainer Blankermann
Rainer Blankermann club
Beautiful captured. Stunning details. I also like the PiPs of this series!
8 months ago.
 * ઇઉ *
* ઇઉ * club
Surely I would have felt the same there as you two. :)
A fantastic series as always, Janet!
8 months ago.
 Jean-louis Thiaudiere
Jean-louis Thiaudier… club
Quelle belle série époustouflante!!*******
8 months ago.
 ╰☆☆June☆☆╮
╰☆☆June☆☆╮ club
A glorious series Janet, very well done.
I can understand Steve having o pull you out, you could spend hours in a place like that ;-)
8 months ago.
 Soeradjoen (very limited time)
Soeradjoen (very lim… club
Great series, very beautiful!
8 months ago.
 RHH
RHH club
What a great photostream you have! Your photos make me feel like an amateur and very jealous. Just spent a great deal of time looking at some of your insect photos.
8 months ago. Edited 8 months ago.
Janet Brien club has replied to RHH club
That's so nice of you to say, Ron!! :) I'm glad you had some fun lookin' through the critter folder! :)
8 months ago.
 RHH
RHH club
Haven't done much photography since we got back from Michigan, but looking through your photos has inspired me. I just sort out some gear, cleaned some lenses and filters, got out some filters I want to use again, etc. Will maybe get out and do some star photography the next few nights which are supposed to be clear. Want to try the Milky Way, too over our lake, though it's getting a bit late in the year.

Trying out a new app called Starwalk. It shows you where the different constellations, planets are at any time and from any location, shows moonrise and moonset times and is very helpful with astral photography, though as far as I know, that's something you've not gotten into. Would think you have fairly dark skies there. Ours are pretty good to the west but to the east we have the light pollution of Spokane.

Had some Laphroaig 10 last night before bed. Have you ever tried it? It's a single malt Scotch with the barley mash dried over a peat fire and it tastes like you're drinking peat smoke. My son gave me a bottle - he didn't like it - when we were in Michigan. It's something I wound't spend money on but really enjoy when I have the chance. At little bit with a few drops of water is enough for me, but just right before bedtime.

Have you any idea how to get two filters apart? One of my polarizers is stuck on a uv filter and I just can't get them apart. have tried some stuff the internet suggested as well as some plastic filter "wrenches" but neither worked. Have also tried putting them in the freezer but that didn't work either. Maybe your resident genius has some good ideas. May have to take it to a camera store though there's only one left in Spokane.

Anyway, that's about it. Had better get some work done. And, if you didn't know, this photo is at #1 in Explore. Congratulations, handshakes, kudos, etc.
8 months ago. Edited 8 months ago.
 Dean Morley (on and off)
Dean Morley (on and… club
A super photo, Janet, and such a stunning butterfly. :-) Your inset pics are also lovely, and I'm particularly fond of the close ups of the morpho. Enjoy the rest of your day. :-)
8 months ago. Edited 8 months ago.
 John Lawrence
John Lawrence club
An amazing set of pictures Janet, Mind Blowing!!!
8 months ago.
 Boarischa Krautmo
Boarischa Krautmo club
gorgeous set of pictures!
the second inset is fabulous.
8 months ago.
 Andy Rodker
Andy Rodker club
Wonderful main shot and series!
8 months ago.
 Trudy Tuinstra
Trudy Tuinstra club
wonderful serie
8 months ago.
 micritter
micritter club
Fantastic images. The closeup of the wing scales i outstanding.
8 months ago.
 Richard Nuttall
Richard Nuttall club
Fantastic Janet
8 months ago.
 ROL/Photo
ROL/Photo club
La perfection...
beau sujet de serre tropicale
merci pour mon groupe
bonne journée
8 months ago.
 ©UdoSm
©UdoSm club
Congratulations on this "Starphoto"...
8 months ago.
 Horizon 36
Horizon 36 club
Stunning capture very beautiful close up, well done Janet
8 months ago.
 ColRam
ColRam club
UN pip magnifique !
8 months ago.
 Ch H
Ch H club
Brillant!
8 months ago.
 HelenaPF
HelenaPF club
Absolument époustouflante cette image et dans les pip's; j'aime plus particulièrement les deux premières, chère Janet, qui sont deux joyaux******************************************************
8 months ago.
 HaarFager
HaarFager club
What a beautiful butterfly! I guess I've never seen the outside of a Blue Morpho, because I didn't recognize it.
8 months ago.
 Ruth
Ruth club
The array of colours on this little critter are amazing, isn’t nature wonderful. Fabulous shot Janet. Sorry to hear you got dragged out by your ear :) That’s happened to me many times at various locations where I just got lost in the beauty of the place.
7 months ago.
 trester88
trester88 club
Eine ausgezeichnete Serie, Janet!
7 months ago.
 Valfal
Valfal club
Wow, you are the queen of the macro, aren't you! These butterflies simply take my breath away in their beauty! :-))
7 months ago.
 sunlight
sunlight club
Ein sehr schöner Blauer Morpho und sehr interessante Erklärungen; danke Janet !
7 months ago.
 Denis Aubry
Denis Aubry
Une belle série!
6 months ago.
 Kama 56
Kama 56 club
magnifique
4 months ago.

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