Monday, June 4, 2012 5:28am CDT

55 degrees F     Cloudy     Calm
Sunrise  5:26am     Sunset  8:56pm 
Our little loon chick has already had a full and eventful life even though he is still less than a day old.
He has just peeked out from under the loon to look at his first early morning dawn.
He has already been for a swim last night.  He has heard the frantic calls from his parents who were concerned that a pontoon had gotten too close for their comfort.  He learned how to get back up on the safety of the nest to spend the night under a sheltering wing.
For being less than a day old, he has already had a full life.
Now we wait for the second egg to hatch.
Or has it already hatched?
It is impossible to tell until the loon gives us a look of what it is hiding underneath its body.
It is impossible to tell the difference between the twitches of a little loon moving under the loon from those of a second little loon trying to make its way out of the egg.
So we have to just wait to see if we have a second chick yet.
If the second egg has not hatched, I would expect that it will probably hatch today.
Then we should prepare for something that is difficult to watch.  That is the fight between the two chicks.  It seems to almost always happen.  There is only one year on this nest that I did not see it happen.  It is a fight for dominance and what we blithely call 'the pecking order'.
But I will warn you that it is difficult to watch.
You will think that they are actually going to kill each other they go at it so hard.  But I have yet to see them do any real damage.  And once the fight is over, it seems to be over.  And the chicks seem perfectly content with each other and get along just fine.
It is interesting that we had a fresh yellow iris for the arrival of the chick yesterday morning.  And now this morning there is a new yellow iris that has bloomed hopefully for a new chick today.
The first chick was born sometime between 6:09am and 9:25am yesterday morning and probably between 8am and 9:25am.  It is difficult to tell the exact hatching time because we cannot actually see under the loon. The eggs were both definitely still intact shortly after 6am.  Then the cam feed went down for a while from 8 to 9.
By 9:25am there was a definite view of a new little chick.  Here is one picture captured by faithful viewer Pegaloon.
As you can see from the picture, the new little loon chick is laying next to the left wing of the parent, totally exhausted.
It doesn't even look like the chick has dried out yet.  This picture was taken at 9:29am CDT.  And the fact that the chick is not even dry yet leads me to believe that the actual hatch was at or after 9am.  The chick is probably only minutes old at the time of this picture.
So today as we watch for the second chick, it will be difficult to determine exactly at what point it hatches.  Other than if the loon decides to give us a look.  With the first chick under there, movements and twitches of the loon are not a reliable indicator now of hatching.
So today we enjoy the view of our little loon chick.  A view that is ever so brief before it goes in the water for good.
Today promises to be a good day with highs around 80 degrees.  With only slight chance of thunderstorms later on today.
And we wait patiently and with breath held until we see the second little chick free of its now confining eggshell.
The wonder and the miracle continues!
Comments or Questions?   LoonCam(at)yahoo(dot)com
Because of the amount of email, I am not able to answer each one individually.  But I do try to read each one.  And I will try to answer questions from emails here on the blog.
Copyright  2012     Larry Backlund