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JUN 14, 2014 - San Francisco Chronicle

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Biting fly explosion affects loon reproduction

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Swarms of biting flies are attacking loons in northern Wisconsin this season like never before, causing the birds to abandon their nests in record numbers, according to researchers. The explosion of the black fly population just as the loons began incubating their eggs has caused more than 80 percent of the loons to abandon their nests in Vilas County and more than 70 percent of nests in Oneida County, according to the wildlife scientists who track the tuxedoed birds with the mournful cries. A cold spring in Wisconsin and rapid warm up in May caused the black flies to ... Read More

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