The call of the common loon is an easily identifiable, yet eerie sound, which is often heard in northern Wisconsin lakes in the late spring and summer. Loons, like the two pictured above, come to Wisconsin’s northern lakes to breed and raise their young before they head to the ocean coasts to overwinter. Both male and female loons take turns sitting on the eggs and soon after birth, the chicks are in the water swimming with their parents. Swimming in the water is hard on the newborn chicks, so, from time to time, they hitch a ride on their parent’s back. This also protects them from predators like muskies and snapping turtles. Loon chicks are hatching, so be on the lookout for loons with their young in the coming weeks. These two loons were photographed on Island Lake in Rusk County last week, but did not have any chicks with them.

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