The call of the loon is incredibly haunting. Listen to it here. It seems as if they live on lakes that are natural echo stadia, so the sound just reverberates all across the lake. It's one of my all-time favorite sounds.
The last day of our visit, the Huz and I waited till we spotted the pair across the lake, grabbed our camera and Simba, and climbed into the canoe for one last paddle. We had gone to see them the day before, but they were wary of us. They would only let us get so close and then they would dive. They're prodigious divers; you never know where or how far they'll come up. They probably swam right below our canoe sometimes to pop up some distance away on the other side. No doubt grinning a loony grin the whole time.
Amazingly, on the day with the camera, they were far less skittish. In fact, the male did a lot of diving, but the female never did. She would just poke her head below the water when he dived; it seemed as if she were watching him, but there I go anthropomorphizing again.
Simba is very comfortable on the water, having spent a lot of time in a kayak with his previous owner. See my favorite picture of him in the canoe here.
It's Sunday night, so we can expect to see lots of canine hijinks over at Weekend Dog Blogging at Sweetnick's place. Head on over for head shots, tummy shots, jump shots and what nots!*From Vermont Fish & Wildlife:
Vermont's common loon numbers reached a low of eight breeding pairs in 1983 and was designated a state endangered species in 1987. The Vermont Loon Recovery Project, a joint effort between Vermont Fish & Wildlife and VINS, monitored the state's loon numbers and began management efforts to increase nesting success.
Artificial nesting platforms, reducing human disturbance and coordinating with hydroelectric companies and other agencies to stabilize water levels during the nesting period greatly benefited Vermont's loons. From 1983 to 1989 Vermont's breeding loon population gradually increased at an average rate of one pair per year. The numbers held steady at 14 to 16 breeding pairs from 1989 to 1994, and then dramatically increased statewide during the next ten years to 43 pairs in 2004.