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  • Pamela Underhill Karaz

Growing Up!

The loon chicks are doing well, growing quickly and learning the ways of loons from their parents who are great teachers. So, remember the trust relationship I so carefully thought I built with the mom, well that was thrown out the window when the chicks were born. Perhaps the eagle scare set the protective mode at a high level, perhaps this being the couples potentially first successful rearing of chicks did as well, I honestly don't know... but after the chicks took to the water, Dad has become highly protective and the agitation I cause when I even set my canoe on the water has been the reason I've chosen to stay away. When I did venture out to see them, one time the wind took my canoe and I drifted closer to the mom and chicks than I intended, as soon as I picked up my paddle to ease away the dad got agitated and did the penguin rise straight up into the air followed by a dive into the water with a quick cut off yelp just before... I fled the pond as quickly as I could. I've only been back a few time since to see if Dad has become less protective... he has, but I can't get close enough to get the shots I desire, so I rarely go and only then shoot from afar.

This was taken one evening when the chicks were still young, mom and the chicks were off near a large collection of lily pads which sparkled in the low angled evening light.

Taken from shore, as the chicks grew the parents would bring them close to the shoreline where minnows are plentiful and are a good teaching ground for the chicks to learn to fish.

Also taken from shore, even with me being on land, the Dad still voiced his call, possibly to tell the chicks and mom that there is a potential risk in their presence.. the chicks gathered together and swam away followed by the mom.

Mom and one of the chicks...

The chicks are growing so fast now, with mannerisms that they've learned from their parents, fishing and diving with supervision... often one chick is off with one parent. The mom and dad are exemplary parents, protective, attentive, caring and great teachers... Barring any eagle encounter, these parents will have their first successful rearing of two chicks which pleases my heart more than any great photograph I could possibly have gotten. I'm not sad about the lack of my opportunities, I'm thrilled with their success.

As far as me, my creative need and artistic side is telling me I need to change my course, I am getting back to painting and will post more on that when ready. As always, thank you for following along....

Copyright Pamela Underhill Karaz

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