LKWA Web Site

Loon Nesting

Nesting History:

The LPC has recorded nesting loons at Kanasatka and Wakondah in most years since monitoring began in the 1970’s. In the 1980s and 1990s Kanasatka loons used an artificial nest raft in what we call Bibler’s Cove, about 200 meters southwest of the Kilnwood docks. Thick lily pad and rush cover has encroached on the old raft site there, and the raft has been floated in a new location in the small cove on the west end of the Kilnwood dock since 1999. The raft has not been used by the loons in this new spot. In cooperation with volunteers on the lake, LPC plans to replace the existing raft with a new one in 2008, and relocate it to a different cove. This site should provide better access to the raft for the loons, slightly less human activity, and should be easier to protect with signs and floatlines.

Report on Loon Nesting

The Loon Preservation Committee offers the following summary of Lake Kanasatka and Wakondah Pond loon nesting activity and nest raft use.

Nesting Data

“The Loon Preservation Committee (LPC) is dedicated to sharing information about New Hampshire’s loon population with the interested public, but is generally unable to accommodate requests to distribute monitoring data on individual lakes. The Kanasatka loon record is an exception and has been provided by LPC to the LKWA website on a trial basis.”

This data reflects what the LPC has documented. Local observers may have more information or may be able to fill in some of the unknowns. If you have any comments or additions please contact Staff Biologist John Cooley at the Loon Preservation Committee (603) 476-5666 or jcooley@loon.org

Loons and People

a message from Harry Vogel:
The best protection for those chicks is to keep too many people from getting too close to the family for too long. Hard to do because everyone is excited about the big event, but the care and feeding of loon chicks is a full-time job for both of the parents, so they should not be spending their time and energy swimming away from boats.

My standard advice to boaters is if you want to get close to loons, especially loons with chicks, buy a good pair of binoculars. Loons can be quite curious birds, and if they swim close to have a look at you, by all means enjoy – but no chasing loons around the lake! Judy Silverberg at NH Fish & Game said it best I think – any time you’ve caused a wild animal to change its behavior, you’ve had an impact on that animal. The firstborn chick will generally be the first to be fed, and if we give the birds enough space then the second chick will also get enough food to survive and grow and fledge before the ice closes in. It’s great to see loon chicks on Kanasatka again – I hope they survive and thrive, and I hope they are the first of many more to come!

Harry Vogel – Biologist with the Loon Preservation Committee

Suspect Cause of Nest Failure

The comments in the chart refer to data based on condition of eggs and nest:

  • unknown- cause unknown
  • avian predation – characterized by a small hole in the egg.
  • mammalian predation – characterized by smashed eggs/eggshells, tracks around nest.
  • unknown predation – predation source could not be determined.

 

  • loon disturbance – loon intrusion
  • human disturbance – human intrusion, human related activities. (Also includes pets.)
  • water level rise – increase in lake level causing nest floods. Eggs washed off nests, or eggs still in nest, chilled in standing water.
  • water level fall – decrease in lake level causing eggs to be stranded in unreachable nests.

 

 

Lake Kanasatka Nesting

YearPaired AdultsUnpaired AdultsNesting PairsNest SiteNest AttemptsChicks HatchedChicks SurvivedSuspect Cause
2019201raft121
2018201raft111
2017210
0
0
0

2016211raft
1
2
1

2015221raft
1
1
0

2014201raft
1
1
1

2013201raft
1
2
2

2012211raft
1
1
1

2011201raft
1
2
0

2010201raft
1
2
1

2009210
0


2008211
raft
1
2
0

2007210
0


2006210
0


2005211island100loon

disturbance
2004201marsh111
2003211shoreline200human

disturbance
2002220
0


2001201shoreline100mammalian predation
2000201shoreline100unknown predation
1999201marsh200mammalian predation
1998201shoreline100waterlevel rise
1997201island100unknown predation
1996211island100unknown cause
1995240
0


1994201shoreline100mammalian predation
1993210
0


1992411raft120
1991201shoreline121
1990201raft111
1989201raft100loon

 disturbance
1988201unknown122
1987200
0


1986201raft111
1985201raft121
1983210
0


1982210
0


1981230
0


1980201raft122
1979201unknown111
1978010
0


1977200
0


1976010
0


1975010
0


Wakondah Pond Nesting

YearPaired AdultsUnpaired Adults Nesting PairNest SiteNest AttemptsChicks HatchChicks SurvivingSuspect Cause
2019201raft111
2018201raft121
201720
1
raft
10
0
mammalian predation
201620
1
raft
11
1

201520
1
raft
12
2

201420
0

0


201320
1
raft
11
0

201220
1
raft
11
0

201120
1
raft
10
0
unknown
201020
0

0


200920
1
raft
11
1

200820
1
raft
21
0
blackflies
2007201raft122
2006201raft100unknown
2005201raft100mammalian predation
2004200
0


2003211raft100unknown
2002201raft211
2001201raft222
2000201raft111
1999201raft110
1998201raft110
1997201raft100unknown
1996201raft111
1995201raft122
1994201raft122
1993201raft122
1992201raft211
1991201raft122
1990201raft111
1989201raft100human

disturbance
1988201raft122
1987201raft111
1986201raft122
1985201raft122
1984201raft111
1983201unknown222
1982201unknown211
1981201unknown221
1980201raft111
1979201raft200unknown
1978211unknown100unknown
1977201unknown111
1976200
0


1975201unknown111