Today I received an email from Stewart Nelson of Ames asking about the possibility of seeing Common Loons in Iowa now. He later forwarded me a photo showing two loons: one was clearly a basic-plumaged Common Loon, but the second bird was a bit out of focus and positioned at an odd angle. Despite these challenges, I thought the second bird's bill looked large in profile and pale, and wondered about the possibility of a Yellow-billed Loon. This evening I followed up on the sighting and was surprised to confirm my hunch - the second bird is a subadult Yellow-billed Loon. I believe this is the sixth record for Iowa, and the second from summer. In the attached photo the Yellow-billed is on the left and the Common on the right. Note the differences in bill size, shape, and color, head posture, and the generally pale-headed appearance of the Yellow-billed. The location is Brushy Creek Recreation Area in Webster County. Many thanks to Stewart for prompting me to take a closer look at these birds!