Eared Grebe — Length: 13 in …..Wing span: 16 in.
The most numerous grebe species in the world, the Eared Grebe has a somewhat scattered and variable breeding distribution from one year to the next, though it has predictable post-breeding movements. These Eared Grebe migrations take place at night.
When gorging on brine shrimp in the fall, the Eared Grebe’s wing muscles diminish to the point where they can’t fly, and their digestive organs increase to help take on the abundant food. This process reverses in time for the next migration.
The Eared Grebe is a small swimming and diving bird with a compact body, medium length neck, somewhat large head, and a very thin, pointed bill.
Eared vs Horned Grebe
The following image shows both Eared and Horned Grebe in winter plumage. Confusing, huh? The Horned Grebe is on the left, and the Eared Grebe is on the right.
The Eared Grebe in this photo has much less white on the face and neck than the bird pictured above. The slight upward curve to the bottom of the bill is more obvious in this photograph. The bill is thinner than the Horned Grebe. In this photograph it is also easy to see the difference in head shape, the Eared Grebe has much more of a peaked head, compared to the flat top the Horned Grebe is sporting.