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Loon Launch

From left, John Cooley of the Loon Preservation Committee (LPC), Catherine Greenleaf of the St. Francis Bird Hospital, Susie Burbidge of the Loon Preservation Committee, and Gary Szalucka of Sunapee watch as a loon swims away from Szalucka's dock on Perkins Pond in Sunapee, N.H. after being released Thursday, September 5, 2013. Members of the LPC believe that strong winds or a microburst last Saturday could have forced the bird to down onto land in Pittsburg, N.H. where It was first sighted on Monday. The loon was finally captured Tuesday by firefighters a quarter mile from the location of the first sighting. Loons have legs that are set far back on their body that force them to drag themselves across the ground rather than walk. "They're not made to walk on land, so if they get marooned on land they're in big trouble," said Greenleaf. The bird was given food, water, rest and treated for abrasions on its belly at St. Francis for 30 hours before being released.
Valley News - James M. Patterson
jpatterson@vnews.com
photo@vnews.com

From left, John Cooley of the Loon Preservation Committee (LPC), Catherine Greenleaf of the St. Francis Bird Hospital, Susie Burbidge of the Loon Preservation Committee, and Gary Szalucka of Sunapee watch as a loon swims away from Szalucka's dock on Perkins Pond in Sunapee, N.H. after being released Thursday, September 5, 2013. Members of the LPC believe that strong winds or a microburst last Saturday could have forced the bird to down onto land in Pittsburg, N.H. where It was first sighted on Monday. The loon was finally captured Tuesday by firefighters a quarter mile from the location of the first sighting. Loons have legs that are set far back on their body that force them to drag themselves across the ground rather than walk. "They're not made to walk on land, so if they get marooned on land they're in big trouble," said Greenleaf. The bird was given food, water, rest and treated for abrasions on its belly at St. Francis for 30 hours before being released. Valley News - James M. Patterson jpatterson@vnews.com photo@vnews.com Purchase photo reprints »

A loon that is believed to have been forced downed on land in Pittsburgh, N.H., by a storm Saturday and was later captured by firefighters is released Thursday on Perkins Pond in Sunapee. The bird was given food and water and treated for abrasions on its belly at St. Francis Bird Hospital for 30 hours before being released. From left, John Cooley of the Loon Preservation Committee, Catherine Greenleaf of St. Francis, Susie Burbidge of the Loon Preservation Committee, and Gary Szalucka, of Sunapee, watch as a loon swims away from Szalucka’s dock. Loons’ legs are set far back on their bodies and must push themselves across the ground rather than walk. “They’re not made to walk on land, so if they get marooned on land, they’re in big trouble,” said Greenleaf.

Valley News — James M. Patterson