Skip to main content
Select Source:

loon

loon, common name for migratory aquatic birds found in fresh- and saltwater in the colder parts of the Northern Hemisphere. Its strange, laughing call carries for great distances. Like the grebes, loons float low in the water and their legs are placed far back. They are expert swimmers and divers, sometimes slipping below the surface to swim underwater, but they cannot walk on land and at nesting time must use bill and wings to inch along. In taking flight they patter across the water with their feet. Their long, sharp, strong beaks are well adapted for catching fish. North American species include the common loon, or great northern diver (Gavia immer), a black and white bird about 32 in. (80 cm) long; the red-throated loon (G. stellata); and the Arctic loon (G. arctica). Loons are classified in the phylum Chordata, subphylum Vertebrata, class Aves, order Gaviiformes, family Gaviidae.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"loon." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Jul. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"loon." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (July 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/loon

"loon." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved July 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/loon

loon

loon1 / loōn/ • n. inf. a silly or foolish person. loon2 • n. a large diving waterbird (genus Gavia, family Gaviidae) with a straight pointed bill and short legs set far back under the body. Five species include the common loon (G. immer) of Canada and Eurasia.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"loon." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Jul. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"loon." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (July 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/loon-0

"loon." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved July 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/loon-0

loon

loon (diver) Diving bird of the Northern Hemisphere, known for its harsh call. It has black, white, and grey plumage. An excellent swimmer, it often stays submerged while fishing. Length: 88cm (35in). Family Gaviidae.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"loon." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Jul. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"loon." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (July 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/loon

"loon." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved July 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/loon

loon

loon1 (chiefly north. and Sc.) rogue, scamp XV; man of low birth or condition; fellow, lad XVI. of unkn. orig.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"loon." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Jul. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"loon." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. (July 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/loon-1

"loon." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Retrieved July 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/loon-1

loon

loon2 name of various aquatic birds. XVII. prob. alt. of loom guillemot, etc. (XVII) — ON. lómr.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"loon." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Jul. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"loon." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. (July 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/loon-2

"loon." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Retrieved July 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/loon-2

loon

loonafternoon, attune, autoimmune, baboon, balloon, bassoon, bestrewn, boon, Boone, bridoon, buffoon, Cameroon, Cancún, cardoon, cartoon, Changchun, cocoon, commune, croon, doubloon, dragoon, dune, festoon, galloon, goon, harpoon, hoon, immune, importune, impugn, Irgun, jejune, June, Kowloon, lagoon, lampoon, loon, macaroon, maroon, monsoon, moon, Muldoon, noon, oppugn, picayune, platoon, poltroon, pontoon, poon, prune, puccoon, raccoon, Rangoon, ratoon, rigadoon, rune, saloon, Saskatoon, Sassoon, Scone, soon, spittoon, spoon, swoon, Troon, tune, tycoon, typhoon, Walloon •fortune, misfortune •vodun • veldskoen • honeymoon •forenoon • tablespoon • teaspoon •soupspoon • dessertspoon • Neptune •tribune • triune • opportune

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"loon." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Jul. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"loon." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (July 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/loon

"loon." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved July 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/loon