Loons are swimming and diving birds. They have very distinctive bodies: long and low-slung with spear-like beaks and blood-red eyes. In addition to their unusual bodies, they have an eerie, haunting call that some consider a characteristic sound of early summer.
The Introduction Article is just the first of 11 articles in each species account that provide life history information for the species. The remaining articles provide detailed information regarding distribution, migration, habitat, diet, sounds, behavior, breeding, current population status and conservation. Written and continually updated by acknowledged experts on each species, Birds of North America accounts include a comprehensive bibliography of published research on the species.
Researchers have long known that Common Loons return to the same nesting sites each spring. Now a team from the Biodiversity Research Institute, in Portland, Maine, has found that loons also return to the same locations each winter. In Washington, California, and Louisiana, the researchers surveyed or recaptured banded loons.
Almost-grown loons eat about 22 percent of their total body weight in food every day, while tiny, fast-growing chicks eat more like 40 percent of their weight every day. An ornithologist once calculated that it takes a ton of fish that's 2, pounds! Those must have been hungry loons!
Common Loons are large water birds with thick necks and sharp bills. In breeding plumage, both sexes have striking black heads with white collars, white breasts, and black backs with white checkering. Adults in non-breeding plumage are brownish gray with white throats and breasts, partial white collars, and white around the eyes.
Submitted by Johan on 29 June During the spring ofGabriella Jukkala was just about to graduate from Northland College. After extensive discussions, Gabby and I became interested in how adult loons might protect their chicks during their fragile first weeks of life.
In the continental U. Wisconsin has an estimated summer population of about 4, adults. Additionally, states with breeding populations include Maine with approximately 4, adults, New York with more than adults, and New Hampshire with about adult common loons.
The striking black and white breeding plumage gives way in winter to a duller gray above, white below garb. They are best known for their vocalizations: they hoot, wail, yodel, and give a tremolo call. Common loons breed across Alaska, Canada, and the northern coterminous states. They winter along both coasts, from the Aleutians to Mexico, and from Newfoundland to the Gulf coast.
Forages by diving and swimming underwater, propelled mainly by feet. Before diving, may swim on surface with head forward and partly submerged to peer underwater. Small fish swallowed underwater, larger items brought to surface and eaten there.
The common loon or great northern diver Gavia immer is a large member of the loonor diver, family of birds. Breeding adults have a plumage that includes a broad black head and neck with a greenish, purplish, or bluish sheen, blackish or blackish-grey upperpartsand pure white underparts except some black on the undertail coverts and vent. Non-breeding adults are brownish with a dark neck and head marked with dark grey-brown.