Orchid Species in our Habitat

Here is one of our new Orchid habitats. This one by one meter habitat holds several Orchid species. Notice two of them are flowering but a number are without blooms. They live in a bark and wood mixture which covers the surface of this habitat.

Many Orchid Species

Purple and Pink Phlox Flowers Colourful Backyard Ground Cover

Check out our latest backyard habitat, Spring has finally bloomed! Here we have mounds of colourful Phlox with a Magnolia here and there. Look closely and you will see a patch of Crocus growing in the grass. In this backyard, the grass is missing patches and will need to be seeded soon as you can see. The insects are already out, including butterflies but we did not catch one in this snapshot.

Swamp Oak Leaves cloak our Eastern Swamp Habitat

One of our new habitats is an eastern swamp based on the flora of Southern Ontario. You will notice there is a covering of last years Swamp Oak leaves on the ground. The colour difference between the top and underside of the leaf makes for an interesting light and dark pattern of the forest floor. The leaves also hide a variety of insect and amphibian life.

The Fern Species of Costa Rica Rain Forest

In our Costa Rica rain forest habitat you will notice an abundance of Ferns. There are a variety of species which range from tiny to tree sized. In this example we have a number of species growing on the forest floor among the decaying leaves. You may also see a Hummingbird zoom by.

The Lake Huron Monarch Grove

Back in 2017 we had a chance to see a Monarch Butterfly habitat on a beach along the shores of Lake Huron. Spending several days in the area we had photographed the Milkweed plants growing right out of the sand. They ranged in size from a couple of inches to several feet tall. We had hoped to spot a caterpillar but none were seen until the last day in the area. After taking the opportunity to photograph the caterpillar we moved on.

The summer of 2018 provided opportunity to digitize the Milkweed plants along with the Monarch caterpillar and butterfly. This enabled us to create our lake shore Monarch habitat. We now had caterpillars seeking out Milkweed plants for food.

 

The butterflies soon followed, landing in the area of the Milkweed grove

 

Here is a close up of the Milkweed grove itself with many Monarch’s resting on the ground. Note other butterfly species were in the area as well, and we have recreated this scene.