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Western Grebe

Western Grebe
Scientific classification
Binomial name
Aechmorphorus occidentalis

The Western Grebe (Aechmorphorus occidentalis ) is a member of the grebe family of water birds.

The largest North American grebe (22"-29"), it is black-and-white, with a long, slender, swan-like neck. Easily confused with Clark's Grebe, which shares the same features, behavior and habitat. Intermediates are known.

Distinguising features: Black around the eyes, whereas the Clark's Grebe has white around the eyes; straight bill, whereas the Clark's bill is up-turned; downy young are grey, whereas the Clark's downy young are white.

Found on coastal ocean or large inland lakes.

Dines by diving for carp, herring, mollusks, crabs, and salamanders.

Will nest in colonies of hundreds.

Folk names: dabchick, swan grebe, swan-necked grebe.

Aechmorphorus: from the Greek aichme (a spear) and phoros (bearing), in reference to its bill; occidentalis: Latin for western.

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