Monday, April 19, 2010 7:35 pm

(for some reason this did not post earlier)



61 degrees   Clear   Calm
Sometimes the smallest of things can cause such great concern.
Other times, great happiness.  And yet at other times, they just put your mind at ease.
I have seen so very little of the loons the last week or two.
I know that they are around.  I have heard them calling a couple times late at night.  Other people around they lake have seen them.  But I have seen very little of them.
As I have told you, at this stage in waiting for the loons to nest, I turn into this paranoid person.  Full of concern that maybe the loons may not use the nest this year.  That maybe we will get your hopes up and then there will be nothing to see.  That I will disappoint you if you are not  able to watch the loons on the nest.  In my worst, but humorous, nightmare I envision a mob of people from around the world with torches and pitchforks coming down the road if the camera goes down or if the loons do not use the nest so that we can see them.
These feelings are not new.  I have them every year about this time.  And it is born out of wanting to give you the best experience possible and letting you see things that you would not be able to see in any other way.
But until the loons actually build a nest and lay that first egg, there are NO guarantees.
It is the time when I realize anew that what happens is totally up to them and out of our control.  It is what it is.  A live look into nature.  The real thing.  Not some pre-ordained, scripted show.  Not some that we can control....not that we would want to even if we could.
And that is what creates the suspense and the  drama of this LoonCam.  This reality is what makes it so special.  So uncertain.  So unpredictable.
I mentioned that last Wednesday there was good news that the loons had not only been up on the nest [for the first time as far as I knew] but that  they had mated!
Them being on the nest was encouraging.  But them mating on the nest was a very strong sign of taking ownership.  And those two acts dialed the "paranoia meter" down a notch!  But then I have seen almost nothing of them since last Wednesday.  If they have been around or on  the nest, I have not seen it.  Up goes the paranoia meter.
But there is good news tonight!
Just a few minutes ago, both loons swam in toward the nest and immediately one of them got up on the nest.  (S)he sat there for two minutes while the other loon swam nearby.
After 2 minutes (s)he got off the nest and swam toward its mate.
Within a minute she swam back to the nest and immediately got up on it.  The male followed her up on the nest and they mated.  The mating took no more than 15 seconds and he got back in the water.  After another minute or so, the female also got off the nest and the two of them swam out into the lake.  The entire episode from coming to the nest until they left was no more than a total of 4 minutes.
And now as darkness falls, they are swimming somewhere out there.  I hear them calling. 
So these are 'small' events that are very profound and very encouraging!!
The 'paranoia meter' has gone down several notches.  And that is fine with me.  Let's hope that it stays down.
The fact that the loons have returned to the nest after several days, is very encouraging.  The fact that they mated for the second time [that I know of] is even more encouraging and hopeful that they will use the nest again this year.
All of this is not all that unusual.  Something similar happens each year.  But you can never be sure of the outcome.  I think this is the first year that I have been able to blog for you at this stage and to let you know what is happening.
Today the technical gnomes brought out some more equipment that is necessary to bring all of this to you live.  They are working so very hard and hopefully very soon you will be able to watch it up close and personal.
But catch up on your sleep!!
You thought you could not take your eyes off the camera in previous years?
Just remember that this year we are hoping to bring you night vision as well.  So you will be able to watch it 24 hours a day!
And for those of you watching on the other side of the world, you will not have to wait until the sun rises in Minnesota.  And you will not have to stop watching at the time of a spectacular Minnesota sunset.  Hopefully you will be able to watch at whatever time you log on!
So now with more encouraging signs, we wait.  We pray.  And we hope.
Who knows what lies ahead and what these beautiful loons have in store for us this year.  But that is all part of what has made this the #1 Webcam in the World!
And you are a part of it!
Now is the time for you to tell your family and your kids and grandkids and their teachers and their schools and their Scout Troops and your friends .... to get ready!  So that they can catch all the action right from the very beginning!!