- 11.8–15 in
- 17.7–24.4 in
- 8.9–20 oz
- Grèbe à bec bigarré (French)
- Zambullidor piquigrueso, Macá picopinto (Spanish)
- The Pied-billed Grebe is rarely seen in flight. It prefers to escape predators by diving, and it migrates at night. However, it can fly, and stray individuals have reached Hawaii and Europe.
- Although it swims like a duck, the Pied-billed Grebe does not have webbed feet. Instead of having a webbing connecting all the toes, each toe has lobes extending out on the sides that provide extra surface area for paddling.
- The downy chicks can leave the nest soon after hatching, but they do not swim well at first and do not spend much time in the water in the first week. They sleep on the back of a parent, held close beneath its wings. By the age of four weeks, the young grebes are spending day and night on the water. For the first ten days their response to danger is to climb onto a parent's back. After that, when danger threatens, they dive under water.
Breeds on seasonal or permanent ponds with dense stands of emergent vegetation, bays and sloughs. Uses most types of wetlands in winter.
Fish, crustaceans (especially crayfish), and aquatic insects.
- Clutch Size
- 3–10 eggs
- Egg Description
- Bluish white.
- Condition at Hatching
- Downy and active; can leave nest within one day, but usually stay on nest platform.
An open bowl in a platform of floating vegetation.
Dives underwater for food, in open water and among aquatic vegetation.
Common. Breeding populations declining in some areas, especially at edge of range.
- Muller, M. J., and R. W. Storer. 1999. Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps). In The Birds of North America, No. 410 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.