Illustrator Christina Mattison Ebert shares depictions and information on coastal birds
In Finnish folklore, there’s a tale in which nature, attempting to create the first loon, realizes it has forgotten to give the bird legs and desperately flings a pair at the loon as it departs. This mythical tale of anatomy supposedly explains why the legs of a loon are positioned very far back on its body, but modern science argues that the loon’s strong, uniquely positioned limbs make it an excellent diving and fishing bird with unparalleled underwater agility. The common loon, often seen on large lakes, has unmistakable black-and-white patterned plumage with piercing ruby red eyes during breeding season, and takes on a more neutral color in the winter.
FUN FACT: Most North American waterfowl have hollow bones, but loons have solid bones and are therefore less buoyant, which improves their diving capabilities.