'Very Disturbing': Loon Nest Lost on NH Lake After Sign Is Unhooked
MOULTONBOROUGH — A loon nest on Squam Lake failed after someone tampered with a nesting sign.
The Loon Preservation Committee said the nest failed June 22 because someone unhooked the sign from the rope line.
As a result, the sign drifted toward the nest, causing boaters to get too close and scaring the loon off. A predator then took the eggs.
“This was a very disturbing way to lose one of Squam’s loon nests,” said Tiffany Grade, Squam Lake project biologist with the Loon Preservation Committee, in a prepared statement. “Given the difficulties Squam’s loons have faced in recent years to nest successfully and raise chicks, losing one of Squam’s loon nests to sabotage at the nest site is particularly unfortunate.”
It's been a tough year so far for loons in New Hampshire. The committee said on June 27 that five loons had been poisoned by lead fishing tackles. Four of them died.
It's illegal to use lead sinkers and jigs weighing one ounce or less in freshwater in New Hampshire.
The committee recommends that boaters, including kayakers, canoers, and paddleboarders, give nesting loons and adults with chicks at least 150 feet of space. If the loons show signs of distress such as craning their necks low over the water, thrashing about in the water, or vocalizing, more space should be given.
You can watch nesting Loons on the committee's website here.