Monday, April 18, 2016 10:22 pm CDT

69 degrees F   Cloudy   Wind NE 12 mph

Sunrise   6:21 am CDT     Sunset   8:03 pm CDT


The last few days have been 'mid-summer' days, not spring days of April.  High temperatures have been in the 80s.

I have just returned from a couple weeks in China.  So I have no idea right now what time zone I am in!

Thank you to all of you who have so faithfully watched and documented what has been going on with the LoonCam.

I see that it was down a couple times while I was gone.  But thanks to the good folks at BroadBand who I assume are the ones who got it restarted.

I have seen at least one pair of loons on the lake and one single loon.  That is encouraging that they are on the lake.

I appreciate knowing that a pair of loons has been up to and even on the nest at least one time.  That is also VERY encouraging.

For those of you who may not have followed the LoonCam closely in the past or may have forgotten, in August last summer we had tragedy strike.

The male from the LoonCam last year washed up on shore dead!

We still do not know the cause but hopefully by the end of this summer researchers will have been able to determine the cause of death.  When and if I hear anything results of the necropsy, I will let you know.

I do not know what killed him.  One of the neighbors thinks it was an eagle.  I don't know that for sure but I will give you his reasoning some other time.

If the male had survived, I would fully expect that he and his mate would return and use the nest again this year.  They laid two eggs last year and hatched one chick that survived.  

The second egg apparently was infertile.  That unhatched egg will be a part of a major study at the University of Connecticut to monitor impacts of the Gulf Oil Spill.

But with the death of the male, everything is up in the air and this will be a VERY interesting year to watch to see what happens.

Will the female from last year return with a new mate?

Will another pair use the nest this year?

Or will the nest go unused this year?

There are so many things that we do not know and cannot predict.  And we have no control over any of them.

The nest is there ready to be used.  But will the loons use it?  We can only wait and wonder.

There has been no rain here during the more than 2 weeks I was gone.  So everything is very dry and we need rain.

I am sure the nest and the plants on it are very dry with the lack of rain and very warm days.  There was 2 inches of snow on the nest when I left for the airport at 2 in the morning a couple weeks ago this last Saturday.  But that is the last time apparently that the nest got any water.

We have rain in the area tonight and it it forecast to rain here as well.  But so far there is nothing.

If we do not get any rain in the next day or two, I will probably try to go out to the nest to water  the plants.  

I also want to check everything else on the nest.  From what I can see on the cam, it seems to be holding together quite well so far.  I am told that we had some very high winds while we were gone.  There were a lot of dead branches down and heavy lawn furniture tipped over.  So it must have been pretty high winds.

It is always a challenge to build the nest so that all the nesting material doesn't blow off in high winds or wash off in high waves.  So far it seems to be intact.

But if the loons are not around it will give me a chance to check on the anchors and everything else on the nest.

There is no reason to be concerned that the loons are not using the nest yet.  We still have plenty of time.  But I along with you always am concerned until they actually take up residency.  The fact that one pair has already checked out the nest is a good sign.

So now we wait.

But it is time for you to tell your friends and family and neighbors to start watching.  And especially for you to tell your kid's and grandkid's teachers about the LoonCam.  It is one of the most phenomenal educational tools for teachers to use with their students.

The SHOW is about to begin!  And it is much better than anything on tv.  And we have NO idea what the script will hold for this year.

And you don't want to miss a minute of it.


Copyright 2016  Larry R Backlund