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                                         e-Newsletter Vol. 18
Upcoming Events

Invasive Plant Species in New Hampshire

September 20; 7:30 pm at The Loon Center


Holiday Open House

November 24; 10-2

at The Loon Center

Did you Know?
Adults start molting into their winter plumage in the fall but their eyes remain red all year.
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P.O. Box 604
183 Lee's Mill Road
Moultonborough, NH 03254



It's hard to believe that Labor Day has already passed; before we know it we'll be raking leaves and carving our pumpkins!  I hope you are enjoying the cool, crisp mornings as much as I am, especially after the warmer than usual temperatures this summer.  Thanks to all of the volunteers who came to the potlucks in August to celebrate the end of another loon season.  As numbers came in from around the state we were surprised to see that overall nesting success was about 10% lower than in 2011.  With a slight increase in nesting activity, we expected a more productive year but instead saw fewer chicks hatched and a relatively high number of unhatched eggs.  Stay tuned for full results from the season in the upcoming 2012 Fall Newsletter. 


Back Lake Loon
Photo courtesy of Andrew Beard

Loons have been in the news over the past few weeks, not only in New Hampshire but in Maine as well.  In late August, residents on Back Lake in Pittsburg, NH alerted us to a loon they were able to feed by hand.  The loon was captured and taken to Whitefield Animal Hospital, where an x-ray showed that it had been shot, with dozens of pellets lodged in its head, neck and wing.  The loon was transferred to rehabilitator Kappy Sprenger but was later euthanized at Avian Haven in Freedom, ME due to the severity of the injuries.  Thanks to the Beard & Pacquette families on Back Lake, Fish & Game Biologist Will Staats, and the veterinarians and rehabilitators for their assistance in capturing and caring for this loon.  

Back Lake loon close-up
Photo courtesy of Andrew Beard

The shooting incident made regional headlines:  Here's a link to the full story from the Union Leader on September 3 and the Boston TV (WBZ-TV) news coverage (link below) including an interview with LPC's Senior Biologist John Cooley and a few Loon Center visitors


There were also two recent stories on NPR about loons.  The first was about tracking toxins in nesting loons and features former LPC field biologist (and Keene, NH native) Mike Chickering, and the second was about listening to loons in Maine.  Make sure to check out these stories.


Lastly, we just got radiographs from 2 loons that appear to have died from lead poisoning.  One was collected last Friday in Eaton, NH and the other was collected in August on South Pond in Stark, NH.  From the locations of these birds in the Lakes Region and North Country, respectively, you can see that the issue is still widespread in the state.  Thanks to Meadow Pond Animal Hospital in Moultonborough for their radiograph services.


All the best,



2012 Carl R. Johnson Memorial Golf Tournament
By Linda Johnson

Sunny skies welcomed golfers to the Carl Johnson Memorial Tournament at Ridgewood Country Club in Moultonborough, a welcomed sight after last year's rain. Participants enjoyed the expansive 18-hole course with mountain views. There were 55 players in all, with prizes awarded to the top 3 teams.  First place went to Stan and Garret Plifka, and Justin Dion by a narrow margin. Brad, Nick and Brent Leighton, along with Brian Ribiero, were a tight second. Third place was awarded to Eric and Angela Webster, Susan McKimens and Michael Schnell. An exclusive raffle sent many players home with additional prizes, including a Cleveland Classic Putter and exquisite framed loon photography.


The Loon Preservation Committee extends its sincere thanks to the Tournament Prime Sponsors: Advanced Land Surveying Consultants and Overhead Door Options of Meredith, NH. In addition, we'd like to thank our hole sponsors: Annalee Dolls, the Broadhurst Family, Belknap Landscape Company, Inc., Cross Insurance, Centrix Bank, Inns & Spa at Mill Falls, Irwin Zone, Sheila Kabat, Attorney Keith R. Nelson, Lakes Region Realty Group, Sandy McGinnes, Meadow Pond Animal Hospital, Meredith Village Savings Bank, New Hampshire Environmental Consultants, The Mug Restaurant, Northeast Delta Dental, Rath Young & Pignatelli, REMAX Bayside/Bayside Rentals, and Savings Bank of Walpole; and our sign sponsor, Saltmarsh Insurance Agency. Although no one succeeded in taking home the grand prize, we are grateful to Kevin Keenan of Paugus Bay Marina for the hole-in-one boat and trailer.


Lastly, we wish to thank Dixon Golf, Winnie McCullough, Brian Reilly, Jane Rice, Ridgewood Country Club, John Rockwood, and Kittie and John Wilson for their generous donation of raffle prizes, and John Moulton of Moulton Farm for the beautiful flowers.

2012 Spririt of the Loon Award Given to John Wilson.

The Spirit of the Loon Award is given to an individual who exemplifies/demonstrates outstanding volunteer service to loons and the Loon Preservation Committee.  This award was established by the Board of LPC in honor of its founder Rawson Wood, who was also recognized as the first recipient in 2008(?). 


2012 Spirit of the Loon Award
LPC Senior Biologist/Executive Director Harry Vogel presenting the 2012 Spirit of the Loon Award to John Wilson.
Photo by Kittie Wilson

John Wilson has been active in loon conservation and an active LPC volunteer since his wife Kittie first became involved in 2003. John has built numerous loon nesting rafts for Pleasant Lake and other Monadnock region lakes. He accepted the position of Chair of the Policy Committee for NH Lakes Association last year and immediately persuaded them to support the lead jig legislation as the NH Lakes Association's prime legislative focus for the year. John worked tirelessly to persuade NH Fish & Game staff and Commissioners to support or at least be neutral on this issue; to secure sponsors for the legislation in the Senate and House; and call and meet with Senators and Representatives. Ultimately our efforts fell short but it was not for lack of trying on John's part, and he has indicated his willingness to continue to pursue legislative and educational efforts, including a joint project with LPC (the Lead-Free Lakes Initiative) to protect loons from lead fishing tackle.


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