Baking: Horned Grebe

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Podiceps auritus

Length: 12-15 Weight: 0.5-1.5 lbs

Identification:

Rounded black head with red eye. In breeding season, rufous neck with tufts of yellow/orange feathers behind eye, and rufous sides. In winter, black and white, distinguished by smooth head and relatively slim body.

horned_grebe

Distribution:

Breed in northwestern and central United States and Canada. Winter along the California coast and southeastern United States.

Cool Facts:

Horned Grebes frequently eat their own feathers and even feed feathers to their chicks, forming a feather ball in their stomach. This may act as a filter, or hold fish bones in the stomach long enough to be digested.

Although there is a similar species named the Eared Grebe, it is the Horned Grebe that bears the scientific name auritus , Latin for “having long ears,” a reference to the fanciful head tufts of this bird.

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References:

All About Birds

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