Monday, May 20, 2019 10:15 pm CDT

49 degrees Clear Wind Calm

Sunrise 5:36 am CDT Sunset 8:42 pm CDT

After the “monsoon“ of the last several days, today truly turned out to be a “SIMON SAYS” day!

Although the high temperature here at Loon Lake of 64 degrees F was slightly below average, it was a GREAT improvement over the cold and rain and wind of the last few days.

There was brilliant sunshine and deep blue skies and only a hint of a nice breeze.

Over the weekend we got over 3 inches of rain here at Loon Lake. In a town not too far from here a friend of mine said they got over 3 inches of rain just Saturday night through Sunday morning. And his basement flooded.

And it was cold. It got down to 31 degrees F here at ‘Loon Lake’ last night! Snow showers were dancing around us. Getting all too close! Duluth had 2 1/2 inches of snow and one place in northern Wisconsin got 7 1/2 inches!

This is way too late in the spring for this kind of cold and snow. Even for us winter hardened Minnesotans.

We are supposed to get some more rain tomorrow night into Wednesday morning. This is the same storm that has dropped snow on Denver and caused many many tornadoes in Oklahoma and Texas. So I guess we are fortunate.

The forecast is for the temperatures to continue to improve through this week and right now the Memorial Day weekend is looking to be very nice.

For the most part our loons have settled into their own routine and have been very faithful on the nest.

During the height of the cold and rain and wind yesterday I watched them make one nest exchange that was textbook and picture perfect. The female got up from the back side of the nest, sat and waited as the male went off the front side and then she moved onto the eggs, rolled them and settle down on them.

The whole exchange took no more than 5 seconds and the eggs were exposed for only a couple seconds during the exchange.

The male continues to be much more relaxed and at ease on the nest. Very seldom does much of anything bother him. Although I have seen and heard him get very concerned when an eagle flew too low over the nest. Whereas the female often goes into hangover even when I don’t see anything that should be concerning to her. But she knows. And through it all she has been very faithful in staying on the nest.

I guess we have not talked about “hangover” yet this year. So especially for new viewers let me explain what I mean by the word “hangover”. No, the loons have NOT been out partying too much.

Many times when a loon senses danger of someone or something getting too close to the nest, they will lower their heads. And in the most extreme cases they will actually lay their head and their next on the side of the nest. This is called “hangover”.

It is their way of being as inconspicuous as possible. And it works!

There are times when I look at the nest and cannot tell if the loon is on the nest or not. So I go in the house and look at the LoonCam and sure enough … the loon is in total hangover and “hiding”. They will stay in this position until the danger has passed and then they will sit with their head up.

But if the danger continues or gets closer, the loon will probably leave the nest and maybe even try to draw the intruder away from the nest.

It is amazing all the tools and behaviours that the loons have at their disposal.

All intended to give the best chance for those precious eggs to produce even more precious (and beautiful) loon chicks!

Copyright 2019 Larry R Backlund