Saturday morning, July 21, was the 35th year of Maine Audubon’s Annual Loon Count. On Lakes and ponds around the state, over 1,400 volunteers headed out to tally the loon adults and chicks in their designated areas.
Over the coming days and weeks, their reports will be collected and aggregated, allowing our wildlife biologists to estimate the loon population in Maine. This will contribute important data that allows us to track and identify trends in this population over time.
This year, Maine Audubon staff accompanied counters in a number of areas, including Crescent Lake in Raymond, where campers and counselors from Camp Agawam spotted two adult loons and one chick. Here’s our update from that corner of the count:
On Great East Lake on the New Hampshire border, our photographer accompanied counter Emilie Swenson, who was counting from her kayak:
Across the state, loon counters conducted their counts. These volunteer citizen scientists are the heart of this program’s efficacy and success over three and a half decades.
Many posted their own updates as well! Here is a sampling:
Annual loon count 2018 on Wilson Pond. 9 adults and 2 chicks. Our granddaughter, Ada, joined Steve an me this year for the count and even drew her own map and completed her own documentation! #looncount35
Thanks to all for a fantastic 35 years of the Loon Count. Here’s to many more!