Western Grebe Aechmophorus occidentalis

  • Order: Podicipediformes
  • Family: Podicipedidae
  • Polytypic: 2 subspecies
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Photos from this Account


Large, slender grebe with long, straight bill. Dark cap extends below eye. Bill is fairly dull yellowish-green.


Large, slender grebe with long neck and sharp border between blackish upperparts and white neck and cheek. Bill is dull yellow; black cap surrounds the eye.


Large grebe with long, slender dull-yellow bill. In winter the bill is usually at its least bright, and the dark crown fades to grayish surrounding the eye.


Juveniles are pale gray with short dark bills.

Adult and juvenile

Note long, thin neck, puffy head, and long, slender bill. Carries chicks on its back after hatching.


Pairs bond using several displays, including synchronized "running" on the water. Displays usually begin during migration and continue on breeding grounds.


Breeds on freshwater lakes and marshes; winters mainly on seacoasts.

Recommended Citation

Western Grebe (Aechmophorus occidentalis), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: https://neotropical.birds.cornell.edu/Species-Account/nb/species/wesgre