Sunday, June 1, 2014 6:01 am CDT

66 degrees     Rain   Wind Gusts to 10 mph   

Sunrise   5:28 am CDT     Sunset  8:54 pm CDT

Expected Egg Hatch Sometime June 6 - 11

The rain continues.

Some areas of the state have gotten up to 5 inches of rain or more in the last day.  Some areas have experienced problems with localized flooding because of the heavy rains.

There is a reason that Minnesota is so green and is the Land of 10,000 Lakes!

It is also the reason that loons love Minnesota.

Minnesota has more loons than any other state in the lower 48.  We have an estimated 12,000 loons in Minnesota.  Next closest in number is Wisconsin with about 3,500 loons.  And then the numbers drop dramatically from there.

Most states do not have any loons that are residents.

Minnesotans forget sometimes how fortunate we are to have loons and we think that everyone has them.  

That is not the case at all.

Only the top tier of states in the United States is home to loons during the summer.

We are fortunate indeed to be able to enjoy this unique and wonderful bird.  And to have so many of them.

There is nothing that says "northern wilderness" more than to be in a cabin or around a campfire and hear the haunting calls of the loons out on the lake.

It is a sound so unique.

It stirs something deep within the soul.

It echoes back through the eons of time.

Once you hear the call of a loon, it is something that you will never forget.

It is part of the reason that the loon is the Minnesota State Bird.

As long as we are talking about "state history", it might be of interest to you where the name "Minnesota" comes from and what it means.

Most "word doctors" say that the name Minnesota comes from the Dakota Sioux word for "sky tinted waters".  It certainly is an appropriate name for this state that has more lakes than any other state.  Although this morning the waters are more a leaden gray under cloudy rainy skies than they are sky tinted.  But even that I guess fits.  The lakes are "sky tinted" even today.  And the skies today are "leaden gray".

But you have seen the beautiful blue of the lake on the sunny days.

It is also where one of the other names of the state comes from - "Land of Sky Blue Waters".

This was made famous by the advertising commercials for a beer that was brewed here, Hamms Beer.  Their catchy jingle was "From the Land of Sky Blue Waters".

We are rapidly approaching 'the big day'!

We may see the egg hatch as early as this Friday but almost surely by one week from this coming Wednesday [by June 11].  If it goes beyond June 11, then there would be cause for concern.

So now the excitement and suspense mount!

We have just passed Day 20 for the first egg.  In fact, we just passed it about 45 minutes ago.

If we go by that video I gave you a few days ago [ (dot) com/watch?v=PedajVADLGw] about the development of a chicken egg and extrapolate to the longer incubation time for a loon egg, the loon chick's body has just rotated inside the egg so that the head is now at the large end of the egg.  And the chick is on the verge of being fully covered with feathers or down.

In the case of our loon chick, it is that beautiful black down that we know so well.

For now, we can only imagine what is going on inside those eggs.  The two eggs that the loons have been so faithfully protecting and keeping warm even in the midst of storms.

Soon we will know.

Soon we will see!

There is a good chance that by a week from today we may already see our first loon chick!

What could be better than that?

Comments or Questions?  LoonCam (at) yahoo (dot) com

Copyright 2014    Larry R Backlund