Friday, 11 December 2009

The Rescue of the Loon

This will become my new Christmas tale to tell grandchildren if I am ever blessed to have any. On Sunday evening my son noticed an otter under out bridge so he went to investigate and thought he saw a loon scoot under the ice. We thought there was no way that was possible...and we had been having -20 degrees at night. Well the next morning I had to go look and sure enough there was an immature loon. He could swim and get under the ice so was not catchable but I knew at some point he would become they winter in the Gulf. He could not take this cold. He would not be able to fly out as they have to have I believe over 100 feet of open water to do that. I asked for help from the DNR and everyone I could think of but everyone said it was dangerous and let nature take it's course...well no way was I going to do that. I had seen one loon die two days before unnecessarily because no one would rescue it so this one I would save. Yesterday I was surprised he was still 8 in the morning after the 3rd night of -20 and more degrees...he was still swimming at 10 and at noon he was froze I called my husband and said I was going in...I knew hypotherma was going to be a problem so my local police officer stood guard...I was ready to go in when my husband appeared with waders and he went in...with a hammer he broke him lose and we got him up on the ice and into a net. At 5 he was flown to Minneapolis and at 7 he was seen by a loon rescue vet. He had xrays this morning and I will hear the complete results this afternoon but it appears he is quite healthy. He might be flown then to the Gulf where he should be. That is where they remain for a year until they aquire their beautiful black and white plummage. I will show you the picture of him frozen and one of my husband as he entered the water...then the camera had to be in my pocket so I could help...wish we could have had a video! So needless to say I did not paint! I will get to it...I am getting close to done and the painting I did for a friend will be posted after   Christmas when she opens it...and I have a drawing ready to go so hopefully things will go more smoothly here soon!!!

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