Earthwatchers are already studying loons in their Louisiana wintering grounds. Now, help scientists try to identify some of very same birds at the other end of their epic migration.
Visit the loons' breeding grounds in the lush forests of Saskatchewan to capture these birds and analyze their complex, distinctive calls. Your research will help complete the picture being drawn on this expedition's sister project, Loons in the Gulf of Mexico. The researchers have already tracked a few of the loons from Louisiana to Saskatchewan, and they believe that many of the other loons you’ll encounter hail from the same territory. Through observations and sophisticated genetic analysis, you’ll help them test this proposition.
On the peaceful lakes of western Saskatchewan, you and your teammates will capture loons along the shoreline, record their measurements, take blood samples, and band them so they can be identified later. The team will stay in cabins right in the park, so you'll spend the entire expedition immersed in the beauty of the forest.
You’ll also become intimately familiar with loon cries, particularly the yodel: the call loons may use communicate who they are and if they're willing and able to defend their breeding territory. By observing the behavior of individual loons and recording their vocalizations, you'll help scientists decipher exactly what these fascinating birds are saying to each other.