Spring migration begins. Loons are decked out in


Spring migration begins. Loons are decked out in sexy summer plumage, looking radically different than the brown/gray birds that landed on Jocassee back in November. The heads are jet black; an elegant black tuxedo collar circles their stout black and white striped necks. White spots checkerboard the beautiful glossy black back feathers. Jocassee loons have, for the most part, flown north, replaced by travelers leaving the Gulf of Mexico and flying, perhaps, to Canada. On a beautiful blue-sky Saturday afternoon we sat and watched a loon take a bath. He (or she) drove through the water with a great splash, rolled over to expose the large, stark white belly, casually preened and oiled his feathers, and turned upright with a comical shaking of tail feathers. After a long winter in salt water, a fresh water bath in the clean, clear water of Lake Jocassee must feel oh-so-good. As if to confirm, the loon stretched tall out of the water, its white belly glistening in the sunshine, and vigorously flapped his wings before swimming away, peering into water in case a school of fish happened by for an easy meal. Just another red-eyed snowbird, headed home for the summer.~K



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We depart from the main boat dock at Devils Fork State Park, Salem SC, 28676