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                                  e-Newsletter Vol. 16
In This Issue
Nest Predation on Winnipesaukee
Event Spotlight: Yakking for Loons
Chick Watch Returns to Squam & Winnipesaukee
Upcoming Events
Fridays, 6/15-8/24;
3 pm

Thursdays, 7/5-8/23; 7:30 pm @ The Loon Center

Friday, July 13
8 am registration

Saturday, July 21
8 - 9 am

Saturday, July 21
10 am - 2 pm @ The Loon Center

Did you Know?
There are 5 species of loons in North America.  The Common Loon is the only one that breeds in New Hampshire.
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P.O. Box 604
183 Lee's Mill Road
Moultonborough, NH 03254


Feeding time
Photo by Kittie Wilson
Adult with Fish
Photo by Kari Post





Happy 4th of July!  Many loons began nesting earlier this year due to the early ice-out and warm spring temperatures which means more loon chicks will be out on the lakes during the busy holiday week. Please make sure to keep a watchful eye and give them plenty of space!  So far preliminary numbers show close to 160 nesting pairs and 80 chicks hatched, which is 2.5 times more than the number of chicks hatched by late June, 2011 (please keep in mind this is an appoximate number and does not necessarily mean the overall totals for this season will be higher than last year).  


You may remember in a previous e-newsletter (Vol. 11; see archived newsletters on our website) that the oldest known female was confirmed on Lake Umbagog last summer.  Well, Michael O'Brien, Umbagog field biologist confirmed again that the Sweats Meadow female is back on the lake and produced an egg at the young age of 24!  Incredible!   


Thank you to everyone who came to our Annual Luncheon and Benefit Auction on Sunday, June 10.  We raised approximately $15,000, all of which goes to loon conservation in New Hampshire! 


There are lots of exciting events coming up in July & August including the first ever "Yakking for Loons" (see below for more information), the Loon Census & Loon Festival, Squam Swim and the Carl R. Johnson Memorial Golf Tournament.  If you are interested in participating in the census but do not know which lake to cover please contact me ( in the next few weeks.  We also have tickets available for summer performances at the Interlakes Summer Theatre.  Purchase a ticket and help protect loons in New Hampshire!  Click here to see the schedule or contact LPC at 603-476-5666 for more information and to purchase tickets.


Our annual benefit raffle is officially underway and items include a beautiful patchwork and applique loon quilt, a life-size loon decoy and an Old Town "Vapor 10" kayak.  For more information about the raffle items click here or contact LPC.  The drawing will be held on Saturday, November 24 at LPC's Holiday Open House.   


All the best,



Nest Predation on Lake Winnipesaukee

By Elizabeth Jackson, Winnipesaukee Field Biologist 2011-2012


Predation on loon nests has been a major problem on lakes throughout New Hampshire. Many times I have come to a nest site on Lake Winnipesaukee and the loons would be nowhere in sight.  The only evidence that I could find was broken eggshells, or in some cases nothing at all. Often times I would be left wondering what had happened to the nest.


This year as a project through the University of Vermont I am setting up several different brands of cameras on Lake Winnipesaukee and other surrounding lakes. This project is designed to test the use of game cameras to monitor loon nesting behavior and determine what works and what does not work. Currently, there are five cameras set up on Lake Winnipesaukee. It has been a bit of a challenge to find the "perfect" location for a camera. It needs to be close enough to capture activity but not too close that it disturbs the loon while setting up the camera. Concealing the camera from possible vandalism has also gotten our creative juices flowing with disguising them as duck boxes. With chicks hatching soon we are excited to see what information the cameras can provide us.


Stay tuned for results in an upcoming e-newsletter!!


YakkingforLoonsEvent Spotlight: Yakking for Loons 


A Kayak-a-Thon to support loon preservation in New Hampshire


Friday July 13, 2012


Registration deadline July 9th; Event rain date July 15th


Registration fee is $10 per person and includes a light lunch. Please note: There is no minimum age requirement, but a parent or guardian must accompany minor children.


Registration starts at 8:00 a.m. Launch is at 9:00 a.m. from Lees Mill Landing, Moultonborough, NH.


Kayaks are available from Wild Meadow Canoes for a discounted rate of $20.  Please call 253-7536 to reserve a kayak!


For more information and to download Registration and Pledge forms please click here or go to the Events drop down list at


Special thanks to our event sponsors Curt's Caterers and Irving Oil.

Chick Watch returns to Squam and Winnipesaukee!

By Tiffany Grade, Squam Lake Project Biologist


Those of you who have been with LPC for a long time may remember "Chick Watch," in which lake residents organized among themselves to take turns parking their boats in the vicinity of a loon family to protect them from speeding boats or boaters trying to get too close. LPC's data shows that, among collected chick mortalities, boat trauma is the second leading cause of death; and Chick Watch was a wonderful way for lake residents to protect their loons, help ensure the survival of the chicks, and educate other lake residents and visitors about the needs of the loons.


Squam chick watchHappily for the loons, Chick Watch is being revived on Squam and Winnipesaukee through the dedicated efforts of some of our volunteers. On Squam, Susan Berking adopted the Sturtevant Cove family last summer and devoted countless hours to protecting the family after the first chick was lost. On Winnipesaukee, volunteer and LPC Board Member Terry Wetzler-Finn and her husband Steve checked on their chick daily and would often guard the chick from waterskiers and speeding boats. Thanks in part to the dedication of these volunteers, both chicks survived the summer to fledge.


Both Susan and Terry found Chick Watch to be a wonderful opportunity to educate people about loons, loon behavior, and, most critically, just how vulnerable the loon chicks are. As Susan says, "You can never measure the impact you may have, but you know that, during the time you are there, the chicks will be safe. But you are also creating awareness and educating people about the loons, and that, too, has an impact you can never measure." Susan stresses the need to have more people on the lake protecting the chicks and educating people about loons: "When you get the numbers, that's when you really make a difference." She and Terry encourage others to participate in Chick Watch and to involve their lake neighbors as well. Whether it's a big or small lake, everyone can help protect loons and loon families on their lake and educate others about loons. Perhaps at the end of the summer, you can look at a loon chick with the sure knowledge that you helped ensure the safety of that chick, just as both Susan and Terry could last summer.


Here are some facts about loon brooding behavior that will help boaters keep loon families safe:

  • Loon families cross back and forth across small lakes or coves on large lakes to visit different brooding and feeding areas. When crossing open water, they are very vulnerable to speeding boats, and boaters need to be aware and on the lookout for loon families crossing open water.
  • Loon chicks spend quite a bit of time away from their parents. When they are very young, the chicks may be left alone on the surface as both parents dive for food. As they grow older, the parents will frequently leave the chicks by themselves. Loon chicks are small, dark, and difficult to see on the water. This makes it especially critical for lake residents to alert their neighbors and other lake users to the presence of loon families and for boaters to slow down and be on the look-out, not just for adults, but for chicks as well.
  • Loons are not safe from boats simply because they can dive. This is especially true of loon chicks, which need to develop their abilities to dive deeply and stay underwater for an extended period of time. For any loon, it is very important for boaters to slow down and steer clear of areas where loons are to reduce the risk of a collision.
  • Loon families do not remain only by the orange "Caution: Loon Chicks" signs placed by LPC on the larger and busier lakes. Loon territories are extensive, comprising whole bays on large lakes and the entirety of smaller lakes. LPC's chick signs are meant to alert people to general areas where loon families or chicks could be, not to specify that they are only in that area of a cove or lake.
The Loon Preservation Committee is dedicated to restoring and maintaining a healthy population of loons throughout New Hampshire; monitoring the health and productivity of loon populations as sentinels of environmental quality; and promoting a greater understanding of loons and the natural world.
Susie Burbidge
Outreach/Volunteer Coordinator