Wednesday, April 25, 2012 3:18 pm CDT


76 Degrees F    Sunny   Wind Calm


[First of all, let me apologize for not posting before now.  I was ready to post at 5:30am this morning just as it was becoming light.  The loons were sitting unusually close to shore, between the shore and the nest.

But I have had a major computer malfunction.  The screen on my computer was totally black even though trying a number of different things.

I had to leave for a meeting a little before 7 and did not have time to try to figure out what had happened.  I have now been home a couple hours and still have not figured out what has happened ... if it is a virus or something else.

I thought for sure I would have to go to the library to post anything for you.  But I was able to dig out a very old monitor (it is terrible) and kluge things together and I can at least now see what I am typing ... although barely.]

Yesterday was a pretty peaceful day in the "War of the Pansies"!

The loons were back and forth on the lake, much of the time totally out of my sight.  But they spent little time on the nest.

Then about 9pm, something happened that I have never seen.  Nor did I see it this time - one of our faithful viewers from many years recorded it.  She said one loon was getting up on the nest when suddenly another one attacked from behind.  Obviously one of them must have been an intruder, probably the one that got attacked.  I have never seen that happen before in all the years of watching loons.  I am sorry that I was not home to see it.

When I did get home, there were a number of yodels and tremolos from the lake shortly after 10pm.

As I went down to the lake to listen, there did not seem to be a fight.  I could not see the loons in the dark but it sounded like a pair were yodeling and calling fairly close to the nest.  The anwering yodel was coming from the other side of the lake.  Over and over they called.  The close loon would yodel and what was apprently the mate with him would tremolo.  And then from across the lake would come the answering yodel.

Over and over they called.  'This is my territory, stay away.'  And the answer, 'Oh yeah?  Well THIS is MY territory so YOU stay away from over here!'

The loon across the lake had a very unique yodel which I have not heard before.  The first note sounded good, the second note sort of cracked and then then third note was just pitiful.  So unless he just has a case of laryngitis, this may be a distinguishing characteristic for this particular loon.

But they were far enough away from each other that even in the darkness it was obvious that they were not physically fighting.

Then it was quiet for a while.  I thought I need to get to bed because 5am comes too fast.

But then just after midnight yodels and tremolos started from loons that sounded like they were close to the nest.  But this time they were not answered from across the lake.

These are the loon symphonies that I used to love to listen to up in the Boundary Waters on a canoe trip.  Now I enjoy them a little less because I know what is being said.  But I still enjoy that wonderful, indescibable sound of the wild.

At 12:15am, one of the loons got up on the nest and did a little bit of nest building.  Then the other loon also got up there, the male I assume.  The female finally left after about17 minutes but the male stayed on the nest.

Altogether they were on the nest for22 minutes, one of the longest times on the nest that I have seen this year.

The muskrat decided to also make a couple visits again last night.  But thankfully no beaver.

Amazingly, I understand from the chat that there was a goose on the nest today but that the loon made sure there was not welcome mat for him!

The loons have been near the nest since I came home and have also been all the way across the lake.

When I saw they were across the lake I saw a chance to quickly go out to the nest and see if I could do something to tone down the brightness of the IR light on night vision.  Let me know if it helped tonight since I am having trouble see a viewable picture.  I was able to do it quickly and the loons did not even know I was there.

I don't know what to tell you about updates with the computer problems I am having.  Hopefully this will hold together until I can figure out something more permanent.  But this monitor is driving me nuts so my posts may be a little shorter.  And you can be thankful for that!  ;-)  [Please excuse any misspellings since I can't see them well.]

The good folks at Broadband have been trying to bring the sound levels up a little bit so hopefully you can hear a little more of the background sounds.


Comments or Questions?

Copyright 2012   Larry Backlund