49 degrees Cloudy Wind Calm
Most of today was a spectacular, warm, sunny day.
The first such day in some time. Few and far they have been this spring.
This evening, there was some more rain but right now it is a stunning calm evening.
The sounds of spring peepers. Once in a while a Canadian goose making its presence known.
But most special of all.....the call of the loons. Wafting across the lake. And then answered by another loon somewhere on the lake.
There obviously is still one other male on the lake because there have been some yodels back and forth, which are calls only made by the males.
But I have not seen the abundance of 7 loons that I saw a week or more ago. Hopefully most of those were just passing through and have now moved further north as more and more lakes become ice free. Our loons do not need the competition nor the distraction.
This afternoon, our loons were challenged for their territory. And as if there was any question, they made it clear that this was THEIR nesting platform.
A swan came swimming by and went to check out the platform. But before he could even get there, where the loons came from I am not sure. But in no uncertain terms they made it known this was not going to be his nest. They unceremoniously chased him away. He went half flying, half walking on water while me made whatever sound that is that swans make. Similar to a honk of a goose but nicer.
He sat looking at the nest. And at the loons. And then started swimming toward the nest once more.
Once again the loons confronted him and once again chased him back.
He did this three or four times before he finally gave up and swam away.
But in the midst of all this, three geese were swimming by. They must have decided that while the loons were occupied with the swan, it would be the perfect time for them to also check out the nest.
But the loons were not to be outflanked. They turned and also confronted the geese. A swan on once side and three geese on the other. It almost sounds like a nursery rhyme....I saw a swan...Three geese came swimming in!
Each time the geese tried to get close to the nest, the loons would make sure that they knew there would be none of that.
At one point, I think one of the geese got stabbed underwater by one of the loons. For he suddenly leaped straight up out of the water and then went flying/running across the surface of the water until he was a safe distance away....complaining in goose epithets the whole way.
Soon both the swan and the geese gave up in their attempt to 'assault the castle' and they moved on. One, one direction and three the other.
There are times that it looks like the loon is going to lay an egg this time for sure when she is on the nest. There has been a lot of the "mewing" call from the female while she has been on the nest. This is a call that is not well documented at all and is not included in the 4 major calls of loons. Until last year with this webcam, no one had been able to hear it consisitently or to document it as much as we did in that one season of the LoonCam!
It would not have surprised me that she would have laid an egg today. But so far, nothing.
But do not despair. I am increasingly confident that we will see eggs laid. Most probably in the next couple days. But how do you predict such a thing? Last year the first egg was laid on Wednesday, May 5 at 9:24am and the second egg was laid on Friday, May 7 at 9:12pm.
This was a little later than we have seen most years.
Now is not the time to miss a minute of the action.
The only thing more exciting than actually seeing one of the eggs laid is when one of the chicks hatches.
I try to scan through some of the chat room but most of the time I am not able to read most of it. If you have a question that you would like an answer to, send it to LoonCam@yahoo.com. Because of the volume of emails I will not be able to answer each one personally, but I will try to give some of the answers to your questions in this blog.
And remember, for those of you in the Minneapolis/St Paul area, I will see you tomorrow morning at 9:20am on KARE11 television. For those of you scattered all over, check the www.KARE11.com website to see if they carry it live or if they post a video of it.