Data recorded by Imberti et al. (2004, 2009, in litt), although not conclusive, strongly suggests that the grebe could be in sharp decline, and that its conservation status is more precarious than previously thought. In the future, several lines of research should be addressed, among them:
To assess a definitive population size, simultaneous field work by a number of parties during the breeding season is recommended. This will be very difficult project to complete, due to the inhospitable habitat where the grebe breeds, but it is important to survey most of the breeding range at the same time.
With less than 20% of the estimated population wintering on the estuaries on the Atlantic coast, the search for the remaining main wintering population is a high priority; presumably, these birds winter in the interior on the plateaus. Also, research is desirable on the grebe's migratory routes and the mortality rate (which can be high for some species: Fjeldså 2004) during migration.
Winter starvation, due to possible depletion of resources by introduced trout on the breeding grounds, could be another threat previously not taken into consideration and should be further studied. The diet during winter is unknown.
Most of the recent work on the species has been done thanks to the support of Asociación Ambiente Sur (from which site pdfs of most of the relevant literature for the species can be downloaded). The production of an ‘Action Plan’ including a strategy to prevent the extinction of this beautiful bird within only half a century of its discovery is also important. This issue has been tackled by 35 participants representing all the institutions concerned with conservation of this species during a workshop organized by Asociación Ambiente Sur. and Aves Argentinas / BirdLife International that took place in Buenos Aires in July 2009.