One of the signature joys of Great East Lake is our loons, with their striking beauty and haunting call. We are fortunate that GEL is home to many loons, with pairs frequently nesting in and around Copp Brook, Scribner River, Loon Island and the Basins.

Nesting is a vulnerable time for loons, who generally incubate eggs between late May and early July. Loon chicks typically hatch in early July, which is also one of the busiest times on the lake. Please take these steps to help protect our loons.

Give Loons Space.

Please stay at least 150 feet from loons, and give a loon more space if it calls or shows other signs of distress, or if it is on the nest. Loons can abandon a nest if approached by people. Signs of distress include the craning of its head downward, the “crazy laughter” alarm, or rearing up and thrashing in the water.

Fish Lead Free. It’s the law!

The leading cause of loon deaths is ingestion of lead fishing tackle from a line or attached to a fish. Please use only non-lead fishing tackle.

Boaters beware.

Loons can pop up anywhere, and newborn chicks can be very hard to see in the water – so please, be on the alert. Please also note that wakes can damage nests, which loons build right at the water line.

For more information on Loons, please visit the Loon Preservation Committee, or you can call the Loon Center at 603-476-LOON.

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