Clark’s Grebes

Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I spent the week-end with old friends Theresa, Dali, and Alex birding up in Clear Lake. We went to see Grebes, we hoped dancing on the water.

We booked a boat with the same tour group we used last year Eyes of the Wild with Faith as our Captain. You can read that post here.

We booked early and Faith kept us abreast of the Grebe situation on the lake on and off up until our booking day. Last week she sent me a text message saying that courting had really slowed down, but she had a surprise. Babies were early and she’d found several pair of Grebes with babies! Did we still want to come up?

Did we still want to come up? OF COURSE WE DID!  We’d go to see the chicks alone! We had hoped to get up there again last summer to see Grebe chicks, but there was a huge fire, the drought, add to that predators, well, it all added up to a low number of Grebes and not too many babies so, we didn’t go back up last year. We went this time!

Here’s my favorite image today of the babies and their parents.

Grebe Family

Dad had brought the fish, made a perfect transfer of it to Mom, and the chicks were out and exposed from their Mom’s wings peeping their heads off to get that fish!  The morning light was lovely, and I managed to keep the shot in focus and made before the boat moved up or down with a swell!

This was such an exciting, wonderful,  beautiful sight to see!

We also saw a few dances. We saw Osprey pairs with chicks, and a really pretty sunset among the most notable things we saw this past week-end.

I came home with 1700 images to cull. I’ve made my first pass and deleted about 400 already.  I’ll try to break up the posts so I don’t bore you to death with images of Grebes all the time. 🙂

Nikon D700| Nikkor 200-500mm| SunDisk Digital Film|

More to come…





26 thoughts on “Clark’s Grebes

  1. Such a spectacular photo! I’ve got an enormous smile on my face. I’m so glad all the elements aligned for magical photo-taking. Thanks for sharing some moments of your lovely trip. Looking forward to your other photo memories. 🙂

  2. Wow! What an AWESOME photo, Deborah! I love how the babies are riding along on their mama’s back. I found it interesting that the adult birds have red eyes. 🙂

    1. Thank you so much Jill! Isn’t it so cute how they ride their parents back. They do that b/c the water is too cool for them, and they can suffer from hypothermia if they fall in for more than a few seconds.
      Several types of Grebes have red eyes. The Western, and Eared Grebes are two more that I can think of and have seen.

    1. Thanks Gordon! The chicks are so unique. I’ve wanted to see them while young riding on their parents backs for years.

      They climb onto thier parents back immediately after hatching, and stay there for 2-4 weeks.

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