Artificial nesting islands, or rafts, are deployed in Gavia immer (Common Loon) territories to lessen the incidence of nest failures due to mammalian predation and water-level fluctuations. The effectiveness of this management tool has been demonstrated in other studies; however, improper construction and deployment can result in lowered nesting success. Despite widespread use of rafts, detailed construction plans and a protocol for deployment are lacking. We present the raft construction and deployment protocol currently followed by organizations specializing in loon management and research in New Hampshire and Maine, and discuss emerging concerns related to management using rafts.
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