Loons may be likened to gigantic Grebes from which they differ externally, chiefly in the full webbed foot instead of the individually webbed toes of the Grebe, and in the sharper, more pointed and spear-like bill. These birds are similar in their habits to the Grebes ,except that their homes are generally more substantially built and are placed upon a solid foundation, generally upon an island in some inland lake.

LOON.

LOON.

Both Loons and Grebes are literally "Water witches," being practically, and in the case of Grebes, actually, born in the water and living in it ever afterwards. Loons are strong fliers, but like the Grebes, because of their small wings they must get their first impetus from the water in order to rise; in case there is any wind blowing they also make use of this by starting their flight against it. They are very peculiar birds and the expression "crazy as a loon" is not a fanciful one, being formed from their early morning and evening antics when two or more of them will race over the top of the water, up and down the lake, all the while uttering their demoniacal laughter. They vie with the Grebes in diving and disappear at the flash of a gun.

EGG OF LOON Dark greenish brown

EGG OF LOON Dark greenish brown.

Loons Family Gaviidae 24Loons Family Gaviidae 25