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Michigan Loonwatch (MLPA)

Who We Are

LoonCorps recruits and assists lake residents and other volunteers to manage and monitor loon nesting activity on Northern Michigan lakes where Common Loons breed. We seek volunteers to fill the positions outlined below:

1. Lake scouting and monitoring: This involves checking on nesting lakes throughout the breeding season and summer, observing and reporting loon nesting activity.

2. LoonCorps Guide: Recruiting new scouts and guides, and lake residents and visitors (anglers, paddlers, etc...) to help monitor nesting lakes, report observations, or install nest rafts.

3. Nest Raft Coordinator: Coordinate and arrange the placement and removal of PVC nesting rafts (and Loon Alert Buoys where necessary) on lakes where loons nest, or pose nesting potential.

4. Donation Canister Distribution: Distributing Loon Buoy canister displays to businesses/organizations willing to display them. Periodically check and empty canisters and retrieve donations.

5. Writing about LoonCorps and successful lake projects for periodicals and local publications to inform residents and visitors on presence of Common Loons in Northern Michigan and how they can contribute or participate (become a scout or guide) in preserving the species.

Each of these areas of involvement is vital to preserving loon breeding lakes or establish/recover new or lost territories in Michigan. Without human intervention, nesting lakes are lost each year due to disturbance or nest site loss. Once a territory is lost, it is extremely difficult to recover its status as a breeding lake recognized by other loons. Prospecting loons often acquire a territory by seizing it from a resident pair member or pair, so an unoccupied lake doesn't often register as a potential nesting habitat.

What We Do

LoonCorps Northern Michigan is the Northern Michigan arm of Michigan Loonwatch, which is responsible for the preservation and protection of the Threatened species of Common Loons in Michigan. LoonCorps coordinates all loon management throughout Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Emmet, Montmorency, Presque Isle and Alpena Counties.

Michigan Loonwatch operates under the Michigan Loon Preservation Association. In 1986, the Michigan DNR transfered responsibility and goals of their Loon Recovery Plan to this private organization.