Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Loon-acy At Town Hall

Here is an interesting thing that happened yesterday.  Several people came to work at Town Hall only to find a loon flapping around the parking lot (see photo below). They captured it and put him/her in a box with a cushion and then called a wildlife rehabilitator to come and get the bird so it could be examined and given the proper medical attention if necessary. When the rehabilitator arrived she said that it actually didn't look injured. She thought it might have just been tired or it had a hard time taking off due to the ice in the creek. But she took it to inspect it further and ultimately release it.

I learned several things about loons when I looked up information on the internet last night. They can't walk well on land. And they need a long stretch of water to take off properly. They are excellent divers and sometimes they are mistaken for cormorants. They have summer plumage and winter plumage which is dramatically different. The feathers on young birds and mature birds in their winter plumage look very much alike (the rehabber thought this might be a young bird). I read that they are so similar that even the experts have a hard time telling them apart during the cold months.

I had never seen a loon up close before. His/her red eyes were amazing. Seeing the bird was a really cool way to start my day yesterday. Hopefully, it wasn't hurt and has been released by now. Bon voyage little loon!