Western Grebe - Aechmophorus occidentalis
|Chicks at birth
|IUCN Conservation Status
The Western Grebe breeds in western North America from the Great Plains to the west coast and mostly winters in California and parts of Mexico. The Western Grebe is very similar to the Clark's Grebe and you can frequently spot them together. The Western Grebe's bill is more greenish yellow (Clark's is orangish-yellow). Both are black and white birds with the crown of the head being black. The black on the Western Grebe usually extends to below the eye.
I have seen their mating display in Richmond and Berkeley, CA. They paddle so furiously that they are moving across the water in an upright position almost like they are running across the water.
Western Grebe's are mainly fish eaters, but will eat small aquatic animals.