Will you join us?
On the morning of the third Saturday of July each year, over 1,400 volunteers venture onto lakes and ponds across the state to count loons. The observations recorded by our citizen scientist volunteers provide an excellent “snapshot” of Maine’s loon population.
The 2018 Loon Count will take place on Saturday, July 21. To sign up, contact Susan Gallo at 207.781.6180 x216 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Send her your name, address, and the lake or general area where you would like to count. We will be in touch in June with details.
Want to order a commemorative t-shirt with the Loon Count logo? Click through to our online Nature Store.
Results of the Loon Count
Over 34 years, citizen scientists have helped us collect invaluable data to chart the status of our loon population over time.
Following the 2017 count, Maine Audubon estimated 2,817 adult Common Loons and 453 chicks in the southern half of the state (south of the 45th parallel, roughly south of a line from Rangeley to Calais, which is the area where we have enough lakes covered by counters to make a reliable estimate).
The number of adult loons estimated for 2017 is virtually unchanged from the prior two years (2016 and 2015), but the most recent three years remain lower than the prior five year period (2010-2014), which averaged just over 3,100 adults. Over the long term, the adult population in the 2017 count is about 70 percent higher than it was during the first five years of the count (1984-1988), when we estimated 1,674 adults on average.
Results of the 2018 Loon Count will be posted here as soon as they are available.