Monday, 30 March 2015

My Top 5 // Lessons We Learnt From Saved By The Bell

Been a while since we've had a 'My Top 5' post eh? And far too long since the epic Saved by the Bell has been mentioned. I have all of Saved by the Bell (plus the movies, The College Years, The New Class and Good Morning Miss Bliss) on my external hard drive and alternate between watching all of those right through with Sabrina the Teenage Witch.
After having just finished another cycle of SBTB, I thought it fitting to share some of the awesome points and life lessons that one of the most popular 90s shows taught us.



Drugs are Bad.
We've all seen the 'Im so excited' episode where Jesse gets addicted to caffeine tablets, haven't we? Although it gets a lot of laughs and mocking, it posed a great point. (And of course made me cry, you guys know my eyes flood at the drop of a hat). Class A, Stimulants, Alcohol. Its all bad for you and abusing it will get you in trouble.
This isn't the only episode that touches on addiction, but also the 'No Hope With Dope' from season 3 and 'No Smoking' from SBTB The New Class season 3.



Don't Drink and Drive.
It's an obvious fact, though I bet you know someone who has done it before, thinking that they can handle it!
You can watch the full 'Drinking and Driving' episode by clicking the link and see the mistakes they made, the lesson they learnt and the journey of lies inbetween.
I think this also taught us that you need to always trust your parents. They'll always find out everything in the end so instead of giving them a mess to clean up, how about just giving them all call for a lift instead?


Remember the Animals.
One of my favourite episodes, though very sad, focus' on Zack, Principal Belding and the classmates relationships with the natural world and wildlife within their school grounds. When the school strikes oil everyone is excited to of hit the jackpot and plans for their dream school start to become a reality. However when the situation compromises the welfare of their animal friends they make a decision. I won't tell you what for fear of spoiling it for you (full episode here) but it's a great episode to make people think there are some things more important than money.
Other episodes that spring to mind including animals are:
Good Morning Miss Bliss S1E4 Leaping to Conclusions.
College Years S1E? 'Featuring X97 the laboratory mouse'.


Honesty is the Best Policy.
Telling the truth is probably the biggest running lesson right through all of the SBTB series'! Zach, Scott and Ryan play similar scheming characters and good always prevails with their money making scams, trickery and the like going wrong in the end.
Some favourite mess ups of mine include the attempt at subliminal messaging in S1E14 'The Zach Tapes', fake ID making in S3E9 'Fake IDs' and S1E4 'Fatal Distraction'. I could actually go on listing them forever haha.


Trust Your Friends.
Good friends get you through anything. Trust them, talk to them, help them out. I love how these groups of friends defy the social stereotypes too. Geeks, Nerds, Jocks, Cheerleaders - all friends together.
'Friends forever!'




I hope you've enjoyed this post, there may even be a part two in the future as I obviously love Saved by the Bell a lot and think, like many 90s shows, that it touched upon some really important subjects. Many more serious ones that aren't included here.
Let me know all about your favourite moments/episodes from the show and what lessons it taught you when you were young.

I have to leave this post on one of the best moments, when Zach, Slater and Lisa return to help save their beloved school! Click here. 



Sunday, 29 March 2015

Weekly Reflections // Week 25

 March 22th - 29th.


Favourite Photo.




Top Thankful or Happy Moments.
♥ Being nominated for awards from Cakey Dreamer aka Sian, From Pen to Screen aka Lucy, and being include in Whimsical Mumblings aka Sarah's Blog love post! 

♥ First day on the new job going smoothly.
♥ Being home after work by 8am and able to get lots done.
♥ Baker being silly at the beach.
♥ Beautiful sun.
♥ Seeing the swans all washing themselves in the morning.
♥ The cool morning air feeling refreshing after work.
♥ Spring cleaning!
♥ Coming home to a load of birds on my bird feeder <3
♥ Gym Class Heros, Rudimental, Mod Sun and more making chores that little bit more fun.
♥ A nap after work.
♥ Doing Cinderella inspired nails ready for Sunday's (today's) cinema trip!
♥ Getting to fulfil a bucket list ambition - meeting lambs at the farm. 


Best Blogs or Posts I've Enjoyed.

4 Things I Dont Believe In by By Catstello
Teen Blogging & Being Real by Lily Kate at Joli House
Sunny Weekend Adventures by Tiny Grey Cat
Travel on a budget - Amazing Prague pt 1 by Sunnydei
New Tattoo by Little Foal 

Feel Good Friday #13 by Tartanmouth
Vintage Clothing: Do or Don't by My Little Tale
What Duck Wore...Thrifting Bargains by Duck in a Dress
San Roque- My Home Town in Spain by Its My Life
Woof Wednesday by Lisas Life
Visit | Leicester (Richard III Memorial) by Prompts by Dee
Travel: Why you should drive to Europe, not fly! by Wanderness
That Spring Feeling by Through Tashas Camera


Bloggers Group Hug.
Bloggers Group Hug = S.U.S, Support, Unity & Similarity. Read all about it here, & join!

This weeks word is - She
She. She is a Mother, Daughter, Sister, Aunty, Grandma, Nana, Friend, Girlfriend, Wife. She is an animal and a person. She is beautiful.




Other Articles etc of Interest.

I'll marry my Undateables star fiance whatever the vile bullies say.
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
The Bunker
Yorkie was stolen from a Canadian couple visiting Memphis is returned to them by Police after Facebook tips.
This Is What The Kids From “Friends” Look Like Now!
Harry Potter's Tom Felton says some 'look down' on superfans
Feed the ducks with frozen peas not bread, says Canal & River Trust (Something I have reiterated a million times over the last couple years, please share it on your social media!)
Ed Sheeran Crashes Struggling Couple’s Wedding, Performs ‘Thinking Out Loud’
Stacey Solomon and Steve-O from Jackass are dating!



What I've Watched.

[!] Saved by the Bell: The New Class Series 4
[!] Phenomenon
[!] The Borrowers
[!] Holiday in the Sun
[!] To Be Fat Like Me
[!] Finding Neverland
[!] Billboard Dad

[!] Life-Size


Question of the Week.

No question of the week this week. I've been super busy and have grown behind on posts. Sunday posts are completed throughout the week as and when I have things to add, and are completed of a Saturday night. As I've had a busy Saturday, am away all day tomorrow (today as you're reading this) and have to be up at 5.30 every morning I just haven't had the time to look for any interesting questions (or read many blogs evidentially :/)
If you have any that you'd like to submit for following weeks, I'd be really grateful! Just pop them in the comments. 




Friday, 27 March 2015

The TMI Travel Tag!

After goodness knows how long since Ness tagged me in it, I am finally bringing you a post that has taken so much time to write! haha This is, as you see from the title, the TMI Travel Tag and as I'm not as well travelled as some it's taken a little more thought to answer it interestingly! I hope you enjoy :)

Sant Antoni de Portmany, Ibiza. 2009

1. What was the last country you visited?
France, for our Disneyland Paris trip in October last year.


2. How many countries have you visited?
Not many, and no where near as many as I wish. Only 6...and that's including England and Scotland :P Though I have explored many places within most of those countries. 


3. What is your favourite place on the planet, that you have been to?
I guess this is going to be a running theme throughout the post, and I don't mean to be predictable but I'm gonna just have to say Disneyland Paris for this one. I'm choosing this as my answer because I don't want to say the place that is the next questions answer, and I haven't been to Yosemite National Park. :)


4. Favourite place in your home country?
Kielder! Rolling hills, glimmering water, wildlife galore? All that is missing is my castle in the hills, where I can live in peace forever. 


Leaplish, Kielder. 2012

5. If you could board a plane now, where would you go?
I wouldn't, as I've vowed never to fly again. I have a really bad fear and my last experience was awful. Now if a boat could take me somewhere I'd head over to America and explore the aforementioned Yosemite National Park, get to see the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, as well as Disneyland and Disney World of course!


6. What's your cup of tea - Tropical island getaway, snowy ski break, or city exploring trips?
Anything but a city break! I'm not great with crowds or busy places so anything quieter is what I go for. I've been skiing in the past, had many family beach holidays and of course UK countryside breaks but never a Tropical Island getaway...that sounds pretty idyllic as long as there was no smoke monster. ;) (Lost anyone?)


7. What are your top 3 hand luggage must-haves?
My camera and travel organizer are an obvious two, but a 3rd item escapes me. I suppose I'll just say my little 'emergency' kit. It has plasters, hand sanitizer, my inhaler and other little things like that in it. 


8. Any travel tips to share?
Organization is key. Like, I know it's fun to be spontaneous but to me it takes the majority of the stress out of it when everything is planned and all important documents and items are sorted in a particular place. I'm a worrier as it is so anything that can reduce potential stressful situations, I'm all for!



9. Most embarrassing moment abroad.
Oh! There will of been a few! I know looking back on things I'm a little embarrassed but I wasn't at the time. One main one that springs to mind is running around the swimming pool in Zante, slipping and cutting my hip and consequently throwing up at the side of the pool. I was a child at the time by the way haha.  


10. Biggest disappointment.
Zante aswell. I had to ask my Dad what he thought for this one as between the ages of 2 and a half and about 15 I was lucky enough to go abroad on holiday almost every year, and you forgot some over the years. However, not only did I fall by the pool at Zante but our apartment had ants in the kitchen and the bed broke just from sitting on it. I can't even remember what the area was like because those point are what I associate with that holiday. :(


11. Nicest surprise.
Corralejo in Furtaventura, Canary Islands.  It was just an overall great trip. We went away with a family that we'd made friends with a year or two before on another trip and found a cool bar with great people running it that was a lot of fun. The island itself was beautiful aswell of course and we did lots of fun things!


Tossa De Mar, Girona, Spain. 2007.


12. Three places at the tip of the travel bucket list.
Yosemite National Park, South Africa, ???.


13. Favourite food discovery. 
Okay, this will be so weird to most people, but as the worlds fussiest eater I'm not big on trying things. But I first actually started eating cheese on my pasta, after having ordered plain pasta and being adventurous enough to sprinkle on some of the parmesan they brought with it when on holiday in Tossa De Mar (nr. Barcelona). 


14. Why do you travel?
I like to learn. The majority of my travelling is to places rich in historical sites, architecture and the like - be it in this country or another (obviously this doesn't include Disneyland so much!). I get to experience amazing new places to photograph and explore, while learning awesome stuff about the history and culture of the area.


15. What 3 things would you take on holiday/going travelling if you could?
* Baker! He is the main reason family holidays abroad are a thing of the past now. When I went to Disneyland for my birthday with my Mam, Jake had to take the week off work to stay home with him and I missed him so much! It's the longest I've ever been apart from him. 
We are looking forward to hopefully going away on Bakers first proper holiday to Kielder this summer.
After going away and thinking about this with Jake I've come to the conclusion that there isn't anything else. Some people, like Jake, are particular about their pillows and stuff. Others would like their bath from home. But me? I can sleep/wash/whatever anywhere. All I'd want would be my little family. 


16. Have you picked up any phrases from travelling?
Not so much from travelling, but when I was quite young I learnt a few main things in Spanish for our family holidays that I still remember. Actually. Remember the movie Madeline? Well I had a CD ROM for the computer with games and stuff and it was where I learnt a lot of it. 
You know the basics like: Hello. How are you? 
My name is... What is your name? 
Please. Thank you.
Good Morning/Day/Night.
Where is the...pool/beach/toilet/town center?
Chips/Beer/Water/Ice Cream ...please.
And I can count up to 20.
I'd love to be fluent in a language but just don't have the patience with myself to learn now.


17. What two places would you not go back to and why?
Oooh. Good question! I think that there are resorts and hotels I wouldn't return to, but I don't think there are any particular towns/cities/countries. Sooo, I'm changing this to which two places would I go back to! I adore Tossa De Mar and have been twice but really want to go back one more time with Jake, (wish me luck, he refuses to go abroad) and of course Disneyland. I'm hoping the end of 2016 will be my next trip as that will mark 20 years since my first ever visit there in 1996. :)


Disneyland Paris, France. 1996, 2010, 2014.
18. Your dream travel companion.
Just someone I can get on with for at least a week? haha I'd say someone like Sir David Attenborough, but really I'd prefer not to have someone who knows everything and would be telling me facts and stuff all through the trip. I like to explore and find things out for myself!


19. Most surreal travel moment.
Surreal in a bad way - our last trip. Disneyland Paris with my Mam last year was of course brilliant, minus the situation we got into on the way home. The two previous times I've been to Paris I haven't flown and Charles De Gaule is sooo daunting. Well as we got to the machine to check in, it spat out a slip telling us to proceed to the desk...cue worried faces. We got to the desk and stood in silent anticipation for at least 20minutes until the lady told us our flight (that we had been booked onto for 9 months) was apparently over booked. My Dad is usually the 'main one' when we'd go anywhere and so it fell upon me to sort everything out. All we could do was go sit at our gate and wait.
We sat in floods of tears while a group of around 10 business men completed the flight and we knew that their 'important' booking must of bumped us off of our flight home. Stuck in a foreign country, inside a humongous crazy airport, we had to put up with a disgracefully terrible member of staff  and not know what to do next.
Thankfully someone helped us find the Air France desk and they were so fantastic and apologetic about the cow who'd been awful at the gate. They got us booked into a hotel, gave us little over night bags with everything we'd need as our cases had been checked and of course compensation. 
It was still a truly terrifying night and so surreal but cemented in my head that I will never fly again.
Woah, sorry for the life story! haha


20. Three people you would like to see do this tag - (#tmitraveltag responses on twitter)
Kerri
Jemma
Michelle
And who ever else would like to! 



Thanks for reading guys, I hope you enjoyed it. Make sure to check out Ness's post here





Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Inked and Awesome || Katy of Not Wed or Dead

[Editors note: A huge apology to Katy for taking so long to post this! I like to leave quite a gap between posting each I&A, or any version of a series, so that it doesn't become repetitive or boring. However, it has slightly backfired this time and some of the points below may be well outdated. For reference Katy provided these answers in October 2014.]


Name: Katy Gough
Age: 29
Website: www.notwedordead.com or twitter: www.twitter.com/notwedordead
Occupation: Globe trotting cake eating writer


Tell me about your very first tattoo:
My first is a heart on my heel. I had it done during a girly holiday with my best mate to Turkey on the day that I should have been getting married (my blog has more on this!). Even though it is small and took less than 15 mins to do it means a lot to me and brings back very happy memories during a messy time.


Do your tattoos effect your job, have they in the past? :
As mine are hidden it would only be an issue if for some reason I waltzed into work in my pants but I believe the overall ‘being naked at work thing’ may affect my job more than my inkings.


What, if any, discrimination or bullying have you encountered due to being tattooed?
Nothing so far thankfully the opposite, when I do show people I get quite a few compliments which is nice. Most people are more shocked I have something so large as I don’t have any other visible tattoos or piercings. But even if everyone hated it apart from me I wouldn’t care as it’s my body and my choice. Amen.


Are your friends and family into body modification too? If not what do they think of yours?
I keep trying to persuade my mum to get one but so far no luck.


Show us your favourite piece and talk us through it.
Definitely my bird on the side of my ribs which I got done in Thailand. I swapped being a jilted bride for a solo backpacker and was on this crazy fun adventure and wanted something the old me would never have done. So after a six hour session, holding the hand of a Buddhist monk and quite a few tears later it was done! (I blogged about this random experience) I took a risk having a non-English speaking tattooist but thankfully I am still so made up with the beautiful line work he created. It is very special to me.


Which tattoo of yours has the most meaning or sentimental-ness behind it? Do you think all tattoos should have meaning?
I guess it’s an individual choice. I prefer mine to have meaning but if you like the most random thing because it makes you happy then just go for it. Like a guy I met whilst backpacking in Thailand who decided to get a massive black blob above his bellybutton because it was 2am in Bangkok and he was it that kind of mood. He was happy at the time but I suspect he may have regretted it once his hangover kicked in. Always drink responsibly kids.


Are you planning any more?
Yes! I am going backpacking around South America in a few weeks (eek!) and there is a (very large) possibility that I will come back to England with a new addition.


In one sentence what would you tell someone who asked, 'Did it hurt?' ?
Yes. But if it is for something you really want and really love then it is worth it. Kinda like having a baby I guess? Just on a slightly different level of pain!


Leave us with some words of wisdom regarding body modification.
If you don’t do wild things now you won’t have anything to smile about when you are older. One life people.



If you are interested in participating in this feature, feel free to pop me and email over to underlandtowonderland@gmail.com with INKED AND AWESOME in the subject line! I look forward to hearing from you.




Monday, 23 March 2015

Collective Haul // January-March 2015


It's time for my bi-annual collective haul! I don't go on shopping 'sprees' or buy a lot of things in one go but still love seeing and writing haul posts, therefore I compile everything I buy over a few months into one post! My last one was way back in November, so I thought it was time. :)
I'll keep this one pretty short, just write everything I've acquired as a list here and let you look at the photos haha.

Saving Mr Banks DVD - When I ordered the copy for my competition/give away thing, my Mam asked me to order her a copy too. Well she ended up just giving it to me for my collection after she'd watched it, so that was pretty rad.

Ratatouille DVD - Dad surprisingly ordered this online for me after Mam and I's trip to Newcastle for her tattoo. We were in line to buy it but it was taking so long I had to put it back so as not to miss our train.

Toy Story DVD - Courtesy of Disney Movies Rewards! Yay!


Bird Notebook - From Home Bargains. I didn't need yet another notebook, but it had birds on...

Owl Ring Holder - Also from Home Bargains, although I don't wear rings I needed the owl to match my bird and rabbit ring holders. It's now home to my Pandora bracelet.

Mickey Mouse tee and Hufflepuff tee - After getting a pair of Mickey joggers which did not fit my muscle calves, I returned them to Primark and exchanged them for these two t-shirts. You already know 80% of my wardrobe is Disney clothing and if you didn't know, yes, I am a Hufflepuff.

Edinburgh Zoo Magnet and Panda Mini Stuffed Toy - Every day out or visit to somewhere like this I have to get a little soft toy, it's a kind of tradition of Jake and I's now. I also collecting magnets somewhat.


Easter sign - Home Bargains. As part of my Spring decor.

Tea Tree oil - I can't afford to repurchase my favourite toning water from Lush just now and my skin is suffering because of the lack of it. Tea Tree has always worked well with it and so I picked myself up a bottle to try and sort out the current situation.

Bunnies, Chicks and Wooden Decor - More little (and cheap!) supplies for my Spring crafts and decorations, of course from the one and only Home Bargains.

Knitted Bunny Creme Egg Covers - I follow an account on Twitter NWDogRescue, who help find dogs in kennels forever homes! Anyways, the occasionally are donated things to sell to help them raise funds to keep the rescue going and I just had to have these cute little buns!
Go give them a follow and RT some of the fantastic dogs they have trying to find homes.

Pansy Seed Starter kit and Daffodils - Apparently the shops aren't stocking all of their seeds and bulbs yet, and so I ended up with just this little Pansy starter kit and a little bunch of Daffodils to put in my window. They've opened up a lot since taking the photo.


Beauty and the Beast & The Lion King DVDs - A gift from Jake, only a few more needed to complete my collection. (I never buy them full price, otherwise I'd have them all by now. I just don't have the funds for that!)

Worlds Greatest Dog Photo Frame - We have a new B&M store that's just opened and on our trip to have a look at garden stuff we spotted this. For £1.99 who couldn't get this?! Just need to pick one of the thousands of photos I have of him to get printed...

Sunglasses - Another surprise B&M purchase! They are sturdier than my Primark ones and are green, so thumbs up to that.

Face mask and Wind up Bunny - My favourite face mask for my recently rubbish skin and a jokey
wind up hopping rabbit just to see what Baker would make of it. It was well worth the 49p! haha

Mickey Mouse 'Ye Olden Days' Movie Poster Canvas - I say it all the time, but I have the best Dad ever. <3



This seems to be a lot longer than I thought, but with it being over a full 3 months and nothing costing more than £13.00 it's a lot better than some who blow hundreds on one shopping trip! As always thank you Dad, Mam and Jake for the little bits you have treated me to too. Hopefully it'll be me treating you in the coming months after starting my new job :)
Have you bought anything cool recently? Tell me about your favourite purchase in the comments.



Sunday, 22 March 2015

Weekly Reflections // Week 24

 March 16th - 27th.


Favourite Photo.




Top Thankful or Happy Moments.
♥ Seeing Mam and Dad after them being away on holiday last week.

♥ Giving Dad his 50th Birthday gifts.
♥ Writing up my new weekly cleaning schedule.
♥ Sunshine finally after a few gloomy days preventing me getting washing dried.
♥ Finding out my references cleared and my official start date is Tuesday!
♥ Getting pumped to workout by certain music.
♥ Sofa snuggles with Baker.
♥ Shopping for seeds and coming home with random pointless tat haha.
♥ Lunch with Mam and Claire.
♥ The Olsen Twins.
♥ Seeing the baby seagulls learning to catch fish.
♥ Dad treating me to an amazing new canvas (in tomorrows post).
♥ Nap time. 


Best Blogs or Posts I've Enjoyed.

Week in Review by Dorkface
A Letter to You by Life Outside London
Midnight by Planet Megan
Musings || 11 Things About The First Bike Ride Of The Year by Crumbs in the Bed
Day Trip Top Tips! by Miss Nicklin
Flare and flourish by Sophie in the Sticks
Sunrise by Creative Countryside 
Event | RSPCA Sheffield VIP Blogger Event by Prompts By Dee
Lying down with dogs + Let's grow together {Link-up #11} by Farm Girl
5 Fun Facts | St. Patty's Day by Simply M
Mothering Sunday and Infertility by Duck in a Dress
The Woman in Black @ Fortune Theatre, London by Mini Adventures 

Week 6, Parrot juggling by Rowan: Resident Zoologist
Kids These Days by It's My Life
One Year Blogging by Dorkface
Female Joys by Life As Amazzable
5 Slang Words I Will Never Understand by Simply M
Learning to Walk Again by Duck in a Dress
27 Things This blog on a whole has such a unique and awesome way of doing things. I can't wait to read more!


Bloggers Group Hug.
Bloggers Group Hug = S.U.S, Support, Unity & Similarity. Read all about it here, & join!

This weeks word is - ???
I didn't receive an email this week and can only assume that we are having a break this week due to the fantastic host having had exams. I hope they went well Jade and that your results are as great as you <3


Other Articles etc of Interest.

Funny moment Katie Price's son Harvey, 12, calls her 'babe' on live TV
All grown up: Bratty child stars show just how much they've changed.
Meteor over Loch Ness: This is how the photographer captured the breath-taking picture
Ed Sheeran Shows Support For Bullied New Zealand 'X Factor' Contestant
9 Ways to Avoid Being a Cliche Tourist in Edinburgh via Genius vs Beauty
10 Things That Are Scientifically Proven to Make You Happier
#GiveBenAJob: Mother takes to Twitter to find work for her son with Down's syndrome – and has already led to TWO offers
Video captures heart-warming moment dog is reunited with owner after six months missing.
These Corgis Just Predicted the Royal Baby’s Name


What I've Watched.
[!] Saved By The Bell: The New Class Series 3
[!] Hello Sister, Goodbye Life
[!] The Back-Up Plan
[!] Snowball Express
[!] Identity Thief 
[!] Switching Goals
[!] The Lost Medallion 
[!] Our Lips are Sealed
[!] When in Rome


Question of the Week.

Which Disney character would you like to be? (Taken from Amina's liebster award post, check it out.)
Human character I'll say... Snow White. She's my go to because of the whole cleaning, cooking, caring, animal friend. Shes just a better put together version of me!
And cartoon/animated character, hmm. So I took to the internet and completed 4 different 'quizzes' all of which said I was most like the main man Mickey Mouse :D (apart from being female obviously).





How has your week been? Tell me your favourite happy moment from the past few days and which Disney character would you be??



Friday, 20 March 2015

Edinburgh Zoo || Beautiful Birds


Quick disclaimer! - Yes, this is a Zoo. Yes, the animals are kept in enclosures. NO, they are not badly treat. 
I regard animal life higher than a lot of human life most of the time and so would never support anywhere that had any hint of animal cruelty. I sign petitions, I promote causes close to my heart and I have done many fundraising events for animal causes/charities.I look into everywhere I visit beforehand and am well informed that Edinburgh Zoo is one of the worlds best for conservation and breeding. 
It would be lovely if all animals could live in the wild but it isn't always that simple, especially because of certain cruel humans that live alongside us. The animals that live here are in great living quarters, well looked after and a lot of them are doing a great service for their species by participating in the research and breeding programs. 
Please think twice before leaving nasty comments. I will never lie to anyone, let alone on my blog - what would be the point? All views are obviously my own but I take care to look into anything I support. 

I'll leave you with a quick quote froSir David Attenborough, about Edinburgh Zoo, "The Royal Zoological Society has shown not what zoos can be, but what they should be".




Sir Nils Olav is the grey-est stud on the far left.

Taken by Jake on his iPhone


As you can probably guess I took far too many photos and so this is the second post out of goodness knows how many! This time around I'm sharing some of the many different species of bird from all over the world, of which I obviously had great fun photographing - bird watching being one of my greatest hobbies.

To kick it off we'll begin with the 3 species of Penguin housed at the Zoo.
Edinburgh Zoo is currently home to a group of bachelor King Penguins, 70+ Gentoo Penguins and a small colony of the endangered Northren Rockhopper Penguins. 
An interesting fact about the zoo and it's King Penguins is related to it's logo (see first photo), and the reason that one features there is that they were not only one of the very first species ever to be kept at Edinburgh Zoo, but in 1919 they were bred there - the first ever captive breeding of the King Penguin worldwide! They also happen to have a very special member of the group in the form of Sir Nils Olav, knighted in 2008, he was awarded an honorary colonel-in-chief of the Kings Guard in the Norwegian army!
Depending on the time of year that you visit you could find the 3 species all at the awesome Penguin Rock, with its fabulous underwater viewing window so you can watch them all having so much fun swimming, or in February/March time you will see that the Rickhoppers have been moved to a separate enclosure (this is to help simulate what would be their migration) at the bottom of the big cat walkway as it's their breeding season. We just so happened to be there on the day they were getting moved and seeing them explore their 'new' home was a lot of fun.






Onto the larger birds and birds of prey and some pretty impressive 'hair' dos.
A quick low down of the photos above:
Black Stork - The zoo is home to two male and one female Black Storks.The youngest male was found badly hurt in the wild and once rehabilitated was unfit for release into the wild, hence Edinburgh becoming his home.
East African Crowned Crane - There are three endangered East African crowned cranes, two males and one female at Edinburgh Zoo.
Eastern White Pelican
European Eagle Owl 
Egyptian Vulture - The Egyptian Vultures are endangered in the wild. The two living here are both females and came from Bulgaria in 2011.







Finally, lets talk about 'Brilliant Birds'. This is a new(-ish) attraction...or to me at least as I haven't been since the 90s haha! Opening in 2011, Brilliant Birds is a walk through aviary, housing some completely stunning species of birds from all over the world.
I was completely in my element and could happily of sat on the bench in there all day. Unfortunately (as I like to reiterate to you so you know why my photos are so poor) I have an ever failing camera lately and it particularly struggles when put into a higher iso, so I didn't manage to get as many photos as I'd of liked.

Among the special feathered beauts were a critically endangered pair of Bali Starling, of which there were a mere less than 50 left in the wild. This is where I stand up for zoos and their breeding programmes as if these birds weren't in captivity it's likely they could of become completely extinct over the past few decades. (The white lady with the black tips on her wings and tail feathers and the blue part around her eye is one of the two sisters currently in the aviary.)

The others above in order are: the Java Sparrow, the Nicobar Pigeon (which is interestingly the closest living relative to the Dodo!!), the Chestnut-backed Thrush, the Bali Starling, the Lilac Breasted Roller (one of my favourites, but she was practically glued to the roof so I was a little gutted not to get a better photo of her) and the Victoria Crowned Pigeon.



How fed up of hearing about birds are you now? Have 10 UTW points if you actually read all of the above and you can leave me the name of your favorite one in the comments if you did ;P