Good Friday, April 22, 2011 7:43pm CDT

40 degrees   Raining   Wind NW3mph
This continues to be a 'typical' Minnesota spring.
There is nothing typical about it!
Last week the temperature finally made it into the 70's.
This week, on Wednesday morning, we had about 3 inches of new snow!
This have continued to progress on getting the nest and the camera ready for you.  And we are ever so close.
Yesterday I was able to put the nest in the water.  The great technicians from Minnesota Broadband and Wild Earth tv have continued their work to get everything ready to go.  On Monday night they installed a new camera.  They truly deserve our thanks for all their hard work.
And right now I am watching the video from the nest!
Now all we need is for you to be able to see it live and for us to have some loons.  We are close on both fronts.
I mentioned that last week I had seen 6 or 7 loons on the lake.  That is more than we need.  About 4 or 5 loons more than we need.  But then over the last week I have not been able to do a lot of observing and when I have been able to watch, I have not seen much of any loons.  The cold windy weather and the waves on the lake make it difficult to spot any loons.
As I said, yesterday I was able to get the nesting platform put out into the lake.
Surprisingly, within an hour and a half after putting it out there, a pair of loons  showed up.  And even more surprisingly, both of them immediately got up on the nest.  They were only there for a couple minutes but they definitely seemed to be familiar with it and comfortable in getting up on it.
After a couple minutes they went back in the water and swam away.
Today I have been gone much of today but when I have been home, I have not seen them anywhere around.
Until tonight.
Around 5pm I saw them swim up to the nest and get up on the platform!  Both of them.
And then they mated.
So it appears that they are ready to make up for lost time and for a late spring.
After only a minute of two, they went back in the water and started to swim away.  But then one of them, I assume the female, got back up on the nest.  She immediately started trying out different spots and then actually started a little nest building building activity for about 5 minutes!
So that is very encouraging signs that they are already taking ownership of the nest!
I have not seen them now for a couple hours....but they are no doubt out there someplace.
And hopefully very soon, the switch will soon be flipped and you can watch every detail.  Don't get too concerned about the time.  It usually takes a couple weeks from their first approach to the nest before they get serious about nesting. 
I apologize that I have not been able to give you much information for the last week.  Between a couple funerals and some of my dearest friends (who I have not seen for 20 years!) being here from Washington state and the 'winter weather', I have not had much time.  But as we get closer to actual nesting activity, I will try to update you regularly.
I still have a few finishing touches to put on the nest and if they go 'live' before I get them done, you may be able to observe that first hand as well.
So if you are fortunate enough to live in an area with loons, keep watching for 'your loons' to return as well!  Sometimes those of us in areas that have loons forget how special it is and what a privilege we are blessed with to be able to enjoy these magnificent birds with the haunting call of the north.  For the rest of you who do not live where loons live, it is a privilege to bring you an 'up-close-and-personal' look at our loons!
Enjoy it.  And share it with your family and friends and with your children's school teachers!
And to all of you, I wish you a very Happy Easter!  Or if you celebrate Passover, a blessed Passover season.  Enjoy it with your family and friends.  Cherish them and let them know you love them.