Massapoag Pond Photography

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Jul 2010

Loon with chicks adventure!

Hi folks,

I trust everyone had a great 4th of July holiday.

I spent all last week in northern VT to capture a loon chick riding on the back of an adult. I wasn't disappointed! The images below are all from a kayak that I bought on the way up. With bungee cords, I was able to secure the Gitzo tripod and Wimberly Head to the kayak and mount my 7D with the 500mm f/4.0 lens along with the 1.4 extender with great confidence (who am I kidding)……this setup is not for the faint of heart!

I received word on June 24th that one of 3 nest had hatched on this pond. I wasn't able to get up there until Monday June 28th. When I arrived the 2 chicks had been killed either by the local bald eagle or northern pike in the pond.

I spent the rest of the week watching the two remaining nest. The weather wasn't great, showers, cold and mostly overcast. On July 1st I viewed one loon chick peering out from the wing of one of the adults. The wind and rain drove me back to camp. Later in the afternoon I returned and the adult came off the nest and there were two loon chicks on the nest. I thought they were going to bring them off the nest at that point (light was ugly!). About 5 minutes later the 2 second adult returned to the nest, at this point I figured there was a third egg. I went back to camp……..thinking I might have to wait a few days.

On Friday morning July 2nd I was up at four 4:30 AM to clear skies, no wind, but there was about a 15 foot layer of fog on the water. At 6:30 AM when the fog started to lift, and I jumped into the kayak to paddle up the pond. When I arrived at the nesting site the fog had lifted, one adult was still one the nest and the second was 10 feet away. Within 2 minutes the adult on the nest jumped off with on chick in toe! It took the second chick about 5 minutes before it came off the nest. For the next 4 hours they remained in this cove allowing me to photograph them. At one point they came so close I was having problems fitting them onto the chip.

It was great week on Norton Pond in VT...Happy

More photographs of the loons can be viewed

Loon with ~ day old chicks

White Tailed Deer swimming across Norton Pond

Cow Moose swimming across Norton Pond

Cow Moose with calf Norton Pond