During summer and fall of 2014, Biodiversity Research Institute (BRI), expanded their loon monitoring efforts to include Watchic Lake. With the help of local residents granting lake access, BRI captured and banded three adults on the lake, after they had chicks. Each adult has a unique set of color bands, which will enable BRI researchers to determine if the same adults return in future years, and if the same mates remain together. They also took blood samples from the loons, which will be analyzed for levels of toxins like mercury.
BRI has been conducting this work throughout North America for nearly two decades, and has safely captured and banded thousands of loons. The data collected from Watchic Lake will now become part of the most extensive data set on loons in existence. The information collected is used to inform and guide conservation efforts nationwide.
In addition, perhaps you observed a lone boat on the lake throughout the fall, long after lake boats were stored, and docks pulled. That was BRI monitoring the migration behaviors of the Watchic Loons. This is the second year of a new study, funded by the Rickets Conservation Foundation, which has never been done before. For more information on BRI and their work with loons, visit their website: www.briloon.org.
Thank you to all on Watchic Lake for your continued support of these efforts to protect our loons!