Eared Grebe

Basic Description

The Eared Grebe, also known as the black-necked grebe or auklet, is a small waterbird that belongs to the family Podicipedidae. This bird has an average length of 28-40 cm and weighs about 350 g. The Eared Grebe has a distinct breeding plumage with its dark crown feathers contrasting white cheeks, red eyes, and rufous neck.

Where To Find This Bird

Eared Grebes are commonly found in North America during their breeding season from March to October. During winter months, they migrate to Central America and South America for warmer weather conditions. These birds can be seen in large numbers along the western coast of North America.


Eared Grebes prefer shallow freshwater lakes or ponds with abundant aquatic vegetation for nesting grounds during their breeding season. They also require open water areas for feeding since they feed on small crustaceans like brine shrimp.


As mentioned before, Eared grebes’ diet mainly consists of small aquatic animals such as crustaceans (brine shrimp) or insects (water bugs). They are skilled divers capable of staying underwater for extended periods while hunting their prey.

Cool Facts

Despite being excellent swimmers and divers, these birds have trouble taking off from land due to their short wingspan relative to body size. As a result, this species takes flight by running over the water’s surface until it gains enough momentum for lift-off.
Another interesting fact is that Eared grebes are monogamous: once they find a mate during mating season every year from May-June in Canada & Alaska), these pairs remain faithful until one partner dies.
Finally – because eardrum-like feather tufts over each ear give this bird its name – this species has unique ear plumage which is not found in any other grebe.