We’ve had a rather odd loon week. Several times there have been 3 to 4 adult loons swimming and fishing together peacefully. The following picture was a day ago and includes both of our adults and another loon.
Usually another adult loon on the lake is treated as a threat and there is considerable commotion. Is this a former chick (now 3-5 years old) visiting? Or, could the parents calmly be herding another adult away from Pearl (who is hanging out near Blueberry Island)? Or, is it late enough in the season that their chick, Pearl, is no longer in danger? Still lots to learn about loons!!
Latest word on Placido is that he is doing fine but still is not quite ready to be released.
Goldfinches and Thistles
Their breeding time is later than most songbirds – mid to late summer – which coincides with the ripening of many seed plants, including thistle. In New England, the last eggs are laid in mid-August, so they usually only raise one brood per season. Because they breed so late, they are among the most colorful song birds in the Fall.
Attracting nesting Goldfinches can be well worth the pain of removing bull thistles after nesting season! Goldfinches also enjoy the seeds of Black-Eyed-Susan and Coneflower. If you have these in your garden, you may attract flocks of Goldfinches if you don’t cut them down until very late fall.
To be continued … Jon and Jen