Thursday, March 17, 2011

2011 WEEK 11: Bloedel Observatory

I don't know about you but I've definitely been feeling the effects of a bad case of the "grey glooms". So when the opportunity arose this week to join my awesome brother-in-law, Joel and his amazing lady, Jen on a trip to The Bloedel Conservatory, I jumped at the chance.

Opened in 1969 the Conservatory was made possible thanks to a donation by Prentice Bloedel, a pioneer in the logging industry who was one of the first people to champion forest conservation and the practice of reforestation. The Conservatory has faced tough times in the last few years thanks to the recession and drastically reduced visitor traffic from the Skytrain Canada Line construction along Cambie Street. In 2010 the city announced that the facility would be forced to close due to a budget shortfall and a desperate need for maintenance. Thanks to the Friends of the Bloedel Association in conjunction with the Van Dusen Gardens, money was raised and a development plan was unanimously approved by the city in September 2010.

Outside things were pretty gloomy, cold and wet, but inside we were greeted by warmth and best of all, colour!

Dotted throughout the conservatory are many, many species of orchid.

And of course there are several feathered folk living amongst the fauna... I tried really hard to not take their photos and even harder to resist posting them here but, they're just too beautiful to not share with you!

This guy was completely preoccupied with nibbling away the edge of a plastic plant pot while the one below was enjoying an afternoon nap.

Not a Norwegian Blue but "beautiful plumage!" A prize goes to the first person to comment with what that references. :)

Speaking of beautiful plumage, this very proud Golden Pheasant was well aware of her beauty and strutted around like she was on a catwalk in Milan.

Huge thanks to Jen and Joel for inviting me along on their adventure. Safe travels Jen and hopefully we'll see you sooner rather than later.

THE GEEKY STUFF: All of these pictures were taken using the Canon 60D. Lenses used were the Sigma 10-20 f/3.5, Canon EF-S 55-250mm and Pentax Asahi Super Takumar 135mm f/3.5. Post-processing was done in Aperture 3.