Here is an amazing and beautiful photograph of a loon swimming in a clean and clear lake in Grand Traverse County. This shows so well the ideal lake for loons in which to live. It brings to mind that most of our Michigan lakes were like this many years ago when our loon population numbered in the thousands. And since ancient times, these are the kind of lakes that gave loons the best chances of survival. Today, observational estimates by Michigan Loonwatch and other official agencies tell us that loons number less than 700 in the entire state of Michigan, and thus are listed as a Threatened Species on our state's Endangered Species List.
The Common Loon is decidedly not common here, and it is the efforts of protection and education and careful monitoring of the birds, their habitat, and working to assure their nesting success, that helps them to survive. The work of our Loon Rangers throughout the state is what makes the difference. In some areas, they may be locally called "citizen scientists" by some, but they are our own Michigan Loonwatch Loon Rangers and for twenty-six years they have been in the forefront of loon protection, education and research in our state.
Soon, another nesting season will be here, and we eagerly wait to hear the haunting and ancient voices across the water, to once again see the little loon families on our lakes, and watch the young ones grow and become strong as summer's languid days go along. This is our fervent hope and wish for the new season and for many years to come.
****************Memberships and donations to MLPA are what allow our Michigan Loonwatch work to continue. Please consider becoming a member of MLPA. Categories begin at $10. Please send to Joanne Williams, MLPA-MLW, P.O. Box 294, Shepherd, MI 48883. Members receive yearly membership cards, a decal and subscription to our quarterly newsletter Loon Echoes. Together we can help the Common Loon remain a part of Michigan's beautiful natural resources. Thank you!