Lake of the Sunset Glow

Lake Vermilion Loon Count

Each year the Sportsmen’s Club of Lake Vermilion (SCLV)¬†sponsors a loon count on the lake.¬† This year’s counting is set for Monday, July 15.¬† The following is an excerpt from the SCLV’s website:

Lake Vermilion has always been known for its large population of loons. To lake residents and frequent visitors, the loon has been something special. One never tires of the haunting cries in the early morning or late evening hours, the sight of a loon cruising the open waters of the lake with his head below water looking for a meal, or the special scene of a loon chick — or maybe two — riding on a parent’s back to keep warm.

In the early 1980s, news of large loon die-offs off the coast of Florida had the Club worried. They could have been “our” loons. So in 1983 the Sportsmen’s Club began keeping count of the loons on Lake Vermilion every summer.

The task was quite large: thousands of acres of water, many bays and islands, and a bird that wouldn’t sit still long enough to be counted only once. But if enough volunteers could be on the water on the same day, at the same time, an accurate count could be taken. Today, the Lake Vermilion Loon Count is the longest running, single lake count of common loons anywhere in the United States.

For more information and a chart of the loon counts since 1983, visit the SCLV’s website here:

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