~YEAR IN REVIEW~
At Groton Pond !
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Groton Lake Report~Vermont
The ice went out the last day of March 2016 as per our resident President of the Lake Groton Assn, Rusty Reader.
The first loon sighting was April 2, 2016
Both our resident pairs of loons returned by mid April and established their locations.
One pair on the north end and one pair on the South end.
The North end pair nested shorty after the 4th of July
The South end pair did not establish a nesting site. I firmly believe because of continuous harassment of 2 eagles and intruding rogue loons who repeatedly challenged and fought with both pair of loons for territorial rights, at times the confrontations went on for hours and were vicious.
Two bald eagles frequented the lake and were observed routinely by many in the act of harassing waterfowl and wildlife, including the loons, ducks and geese. I observed an eagle, eating a heron on the eastern shoreline and another witnessed a duck being carried away in the talons by an eagle. And an eagle was seen by Mike ConCannon stealing a fish from a loon . The loon has just caught it and was trying to eat, but dropped it when the eagle nosed dived upon it, whereas the loon dropped it and dove to safety., and the eagle took flight with the fish.l
The First week of July the North end pair of loons hatched out at least one chick. One witness said they saw two chicks,, but only one was seen frequently after the first few hours of the hatch.
The third week in August a large male loon attacked and injured the unattended remaining 6 week old chick on the east shore , on the north end , in front of summer residents the Spencers, the Church's and friend, Kit Johnson. These folks witnessed the attack and watch as the male loon, continuously assaulted the chick. By some miracle the chick was able to escape and make it to the shoreline, to hide under overhanging bushes. The residents were able to keep the intruder loon from further attacking the chick, by standing between the chick and attacker, as he continued his aggression close by.
Darlene Sprague, Vt Loon Conservation Program volunteer was called. . She was able to arrive shortly and net the injured chick, box it up and remove it from the area. In turn she called the area Game Warden to retrieve it and he transport it to VINS for examination of its injuries
To see photos and follow up story, click on Loon Ranger
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