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Grebes: Podicipediformes

Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Great Crested Grebe (podiceps Cristatus): Species Accounts, Western Grebe (aechmophorus Occidentalis): Species AccountsGEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, GREBES AND PEOPLE, C

GREAT CRESTED GREBE (Podiceps cristatus): SPECIES ACCOUNTS
WESTERN GREBE (Aechmophorus occidentalis): SPECIES ACCOUNTS

Grebes live throughout the world but not in the Antarctic or high Arctic regions where temperatures are frigid.


Grebes live in freshwater ponds and lakes as well as slow-moving rivers. Northern populations migrate, travel from region to region seasonally, to inland lakes and coastal waters during winter months.


In addition to feathers, grebes eat many kinds of fish, including perch, herring, eels, minnow, pipefish, goby, and cod. They also eat water bugs, crayfish, shrimp, and snails.

Grebes are powerful divers and can feed just below the surface or in greater depths.


Though once hunted for their plumage, feathers, and as food, grebes are considered bad-tasting in most parts of the world today. In China, the little grebe's meat is used for medicine.


Although no species of grebe is immediately threatened, two species, the giant pied-billed grebe and Colombian grebe, became Extinct, died out, in the 1970s. The Alaotra grebe is listed as Vulnerable, facing a high risk of extinction in the wild. The numbers of the Madagascar grebe have declined recently to the point of concern, due primarily to habitat destruction and the introduction of exotic fish.

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Animal Life ResourceBirds