The Loon Preservation Committee says the survival rate has dropped for five years and was the second worst this year since 1975. The nonprofit committee says 95 of the 125 chicks hatched on New Hampshire lakes this year survived.
The committee’s executive director, Harry Vogel, says the news was especially bad on the largest lakes. The Moultonborough-based committee counted only seven surviving chicks on those lakes.
Vogel says some eggs tested last year were contaminated with a relatively new kind of chemical used as flame retardants and stain repellants. More tests are planned.