It also has a large population size of 612,000 to 640,000 individuals. They are very fast fliers and they hit the water hard but it doesn’t seem to phase them. Winter adult and juvenile have dark upperparts, dull white mottled underparts, throat, and chin, and gray bill. Their range has retracted in New England as well, though loon populations have rebounded there thanks to restoration efforts. Increased human activity in an area can cause loons to abandon nesting sites, and can result in incubating birds leaving their nests, thus exposing vulnerable eggs to predation. In winter, they are plain gray above and white below, and you’ll find them close to shore on most seacoasts and a good many inland reservoirs and lakes. The common loon spends little time on land though, typically only going ashore to nest. A., M. J. Steinkamp, K. C. Parsons, J. Capp, M. A. Cruz, M. Coulter, I. Davidson, L. Dickson, N. Edelson, R. Elliott, R. M. Erwin, S. Hatch, S. Kress, R. Milko, S. Miller, K. Mills, R. Paul, R. Phillips, J. E. Saliva, W. Sydeman, J. Trapp, J. Wheeler and K. Wohl (2002). They set off individually to visit five or … There are also several large lakes that attract non-breeding individuals – either young loons or displaced breeders. Loons are monogamous, and pair bonds typically last about 5 years. Evers, D. C., J. D. Paruk, J. W. McIntyre, and J. F. Barr (2010). The common loon (Gavia immer) is one of five loon species found in the world. Common loon sounds are well known to people who live near their habitats. var sc_project=965006; At night, though, they sometimes stick together in groups called flocks while they sleep. In winter, silent and more subtly marked, Common Loons inhabit coastal waters and large southern lakes. Explore Birds of the World to learn more. After sundown, many North Woods lakes reverberate with the echoes of loon wails and yodels and tremolos (which writer John McPhee called “the laugh of the deeply insane”). Common Loon: Breeds from the Aleutian Islands, Alaska, and northern Canada south to Washington, Montana, and Massachusetts; may occur further south, also breeds in Greenland and Iceland. Courtship consists of swimming in circles and synchronous dives. Some Common Loons winter inland, on large reservoirs and slow-moving rivers. Common Loon: Large loon with white-spotted, black upperparts and white underparts. Canoeists who get too close to a loon may witness this display, along with a defensive tremolo call as the loon swims away. The male selects the nest site. The common loon is the official state bird of Minnesota. Lutmerding, J. Simultaneous-dive.-On the two occasions when this occurred, it immediately followed mutual bill-dipping. Loons shoot through the water like a torpedo, propelled by powerful thrusts of fee… Bill is black and thick. USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, MD, USA. They are experts when it comes to diving in order to get prey under the surface of the water. In the Midwest, loons have disappeared from breeding sites in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, and Ohio, and are only found in northern areas of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan. Common Loons are expert anglers. The estimated breeding population ranges from 1,400 to 2,600 mature individuals in Europe. Version 1019 Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Bird Banding Laboratory 2019. [CDATA[ Loons nest in quiet, protected, hidden spots of lakeshore, typically in the lee of islands or in a sheltered back bay. In spring, loon mates arrive back on their lake separately. It is highly territorial with both males and females each fighting to maintain or take over a territory.… Common Loon Behavior … In one way, loons are like airplanes: they need a runway to take off. Loons do all their feeding during the day, when they can best see their prey. : "http://www. In winter, they can be challenging to tell apart, except the common loon is much more widespread and more likely to be seen in … They can be very vocally active with nocturnal choruses. At the height of bill-dipping, as if on a signal, both Loons also perform a territorial display of lifting their body upright and flapping their wings vigorously. Common loon, Gavia immer. Many times a nesting pair of loons will reuse the same site the following year, refurbishing their old nest instead of building a new one. 2016 State of North America's Birds' Watch List. Common Loons spend a lot of their time working shallow waters for fish: swimming slowly and sticking their heads into the water to look for fish, then diving suddenly after their quarry with a quick plip! var pageTracker = _gat._getTracker("UA-129491-1"); Unlock thousands of full-length species accounts and hundreds of bird family overviews when you subscribe to Birds of the World. Common Loon: Call is a loud, wailing laugh, also a mournful yodeled "oo-AH-ho" with a higher middle note; also makes a loud, ringing "kee-a-ree, kee-a-ree" with a lower middle note. Common Loon: Eats mostly fish and occasionally crustaceans such as crayfish; forages by diving from the surface and chasing down prey underwater. For both lake types, adults spent >90% of their time on the nesting lake and >50% of their time foraging. Covered with down, sooty black with a white belly. The eerie calls of Common Loons echo across clear lakes of the northern wilderness. Within the Common Loon's specialized breeding habitat, it further requires a sheltered shoreline nest site with an unobstructed view, preferably on an island or floating bog and close to a sheltered, food-rich area of open water that serves as a "nursery pool" for the chicks. And breeding Interesting Facts about the common loon, Pacific loon, loon! 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