35 degrees F Clear Wind Calm
Sunrise 5:59 am CDT Sunset 8:22 pm CDT
This morning is a spectacular sunrise on Loon Lake.
There is not a breath of air moving. The whole lake is like a mirror with not one ripple. Other than from the occasional fish jumping. Or our loons and other birds swimming.
It is the kind of morning you just want to bottle and keep forever.
Gone are the high winds of the last number of days. And the cold. And the rain. And the snow.
There may be some rain that moves in later on today, but it should be short-lived. And the forecast for the next few days is spectacular. Maybe even up to 70 by this weekend.
Even though the loon nest has been battered by big waves, it seems to have held together amazingly well so far.
Our loons have already paid two visits to the nest this morning. The last one only 10 minutes ago. Now they have gone back out into the lake.
As they left, the male gave six yodels. As if to say, "This is MY territory! Everyone else stay away!!"
But it is encouraging that they continue to visit the nest.
As I said, the frequency of those visits will increase. And that is exactly what seems to be happening.
Yesterday they visited the nest and even mated once that I know of. Plus both loons exhibited some nest building behavior by digging with their feet to form a bowl as well as taking material with their bills and piling it along their sides.
You can expect this kind of behavior to continue and to increase in the days ahead.
However, they don't seem to have settled on a location for the 'bowl' yet. The male has tended to dig toward the front edge of the nest, much too close to the edge for my comfort. During the high waves yesterday morning, water was splashing onto the nest and filling the bowl with cold water.
The female has tended to dig towards the back edge of the nest, nearer to the camera.
But hopefully they will compare notes and settle on a location right in the middle of the nesting platform.
All of this seems to be going according to "plan". Visits to the nest. Mating. Getting comfortable with the nest (after all, this is a new pair of loons on the nest this year). Increasing frequency of visits to the nest. Digging and nest building behavior.
You can expect that on one of the visits (hopefully very soon) the nest building behavior will be obviously more urgent.
And then hopefully soon after that, an EGG! Or two.
We now approach a VERY exciting time on the nest as we watch - EXPECTANTLY!
Copyright 2017 Larry R Backlund