Wednesday, April 29, 2009 8:40pm CDT


Darkness falls across a moody northern lake in between rain showers.  And the loons are well.

Many of you have noticed the increased activity of the loons around the nest.  Swimming around the nest more often.  Up on the nest.  Getting more serious about rearranging materials on the nest and forming it just right.  Sitting there for a few minutes.  Getting off the nest.   Getting on the nest.  Mating. Getting off the nest.  Only to return once again shortly after.

I think all of the activity is very hopeful sign that we are getting nearer and nearer to actual laying of the eggs.

Once we have eggs, then everything changes!  Things are much more serious.  The stakes are higher.  Everything that the loons have is poured into those eggs.  And the loons will then be nestbound for the next month!  After eggs are laid, you can be almost bevassured that everytime you check on the nest, one of the loons will be there.

Tonight, in between rain showers and loon visits, I was trying to put in some sections of my dock.  I try to get as much done before they nest because once the loons are on the nest, everything stops.  No one goes out on the dock.  No boats or canoes or pontoons are used.  On Memorial Day, the traditional start of summer in Minnesota, if the loons are there the kids know they can't go swimming.  Everything belongs to and revolves around the loons.

So tonight, the loons had disappeared somewhere out on the lake.  And in between rain showers, I tried to get more of the dock put in.  Then, out of no where, one of the loons was there watching me from just beyond the nest.  Since the loon (I think it was the female) did not seem to be distressed or upset at all, I wanted to finish installing that section before I went back up to the house.  Plus it was starting to rain again.  So I hurried.

Then the second loon was there.  Neither one of them seemed to be concerned at all.  They simply floated.  And watched.  They came to within about 15 to 20 feet of me!  I talked to them as I hurried to finish.  But they just sat and watched.  Without getting too over the top, let me say that it is a humbling feeling to have them that close.  At THEIR choice.  If they showed ANY signs of being disturbed, I was out of there.  But they simply sat and watched.

Trust me.  If a loon is upset, you will know it.  By their alarm calls.  By their displays.  By their frantic diving.  But they were totally at ease.  I would never suggest to anybody to try to get that close to a loon.  But, like I said, it is humbling when THEY make the choice.

So I finished the work in a few minutes and left.  After a little while, they swam out into the lake.  Content that all was well with their world.

So, once again I say to you, enjoy this wonderful opportunity for a close look into the life of the loons and the miracle that will unfold before your eyes.