Hand-rearing, growth, and development of common loon (Gavia immer) chicks.

Zoo biology

PubMedID: 24753001

Kenow KP, Meier MS, McColl LE, Hines RK, Pichner J, Johnson L, Lyon JE, Kroc Scharold K, Meyer M. Hand-rearing, growth, and development of common loon (Gavia immer) chicks. Zoo Biol. 2014;.
Common loon chicks were reared in captivity in association with studies to evaluate the effects of radiotransmitter implants and to assess the ecological risk of dietary methylmercury. Here we report on hatching and rearing methods used to successfully raise chicks to 105 days of age. We experienced a 91.5% hatch rate, and 89.6% of loon chicks survived to the end of the study at 105 days. Baseline information on observed rates of fish consumption, behavioral development, and growth patterns are provided. Husbandry techniques are provided that should prove valuable to wildlife rehabilitators caring for abandoned or injured loons, and biologists contemplating methods for restoring loons to areas within their former breeding range. Zoo Biol. XX:XX-XX, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals Inc.