This week is reading week at the university, so there are no classes for the undergrads and more free time for us grad students. Today, I visited a place I have been hearing a lot about from my friend - the Big Sky Ranch Animal Sanctuary in Kemptville. Big Sky Ranch is a place where animals (abandoned or unable to care for by their previous humans) are able to be adopted by new humans or to live permanently at this no-kill sanctuary. The sanctuary is open to visitors most times of the year and is free of charge, but donation is definitely appreciated especially during the colder months when there are little to no visitors. While my friend and I were walking around the sanctuary and enjoying the presence of all the animals, I cannot help but feel sad and angry at the people who would abandon their care for these animals. But I am glad places like Big Sky Ranch exist and there are nice people who invest their time and money to improve the lives of these animals. During our visit, all of the animals seemed to be well-cared for and their living conditions were clean and comfortable.
The temperature has been dropping steadily since the last weekend, when I was helping my friend searching for male pumpkin flowers with viable pollen. We traveled to two different farms outside of Ottawa, but we only got about three small vials worth of pumpkin pollen because of the recent frost.
One of the farms we visited was Saunders Farm, a popular place to go during autumn with all of its pumpkin- and Halloween-related activies. We got to go on a hayride to look for flowers.
I went to the butterfly show at Carleton University last week. Learning from my experience two years ago, I went there first thing in the morning so that I did not have to wait in-line or be surrounded by loud people. Sadly, I was there for only 15 minutes before schoolchildren started to pile into the greenhouse.
I brought only my macro lens and small flash with me, and I tried to note as many of the butterfly species I photographed as possible.