Podiceps nigricollis - Brehm, 1831
Eared Grebe
Other English Common Names: Black-necked Grebe
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Podiceps nigricollis Brehm, 1831 (TSN 174485)
French Common Names: grèbe à cou noir
Spanish Common Names: Zambullidor Orejudo
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.100013
Element Code: ABNCA03030
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Birds - Other Birds
Image 11093

© Jeff Nadler

 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Aves Podicipediformes Podicipedidae Podiceps
Genus Size: C - Small genus (6-20 species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1998. Check-list of North American birds. Seventh edition. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C. [as modified by subsequent supplements and corrections published in The Auk]. Also available online: http://www.aou.org/.
Concept Reference Code: B98AOU01NAUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Podiceps nigricollis
Taxonomic Comments: Potentially constitutes a superspecies with P. andinus and P. occipitalis (AOU 1998). P. andinus of Colombia sometimes considered a race of nigricollis (AOU 1998). P. caspicus, used by some authors for P. nigricollis, has been officially suppressed (AOU 1983, Banks and Browning 1995).
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 09Apr2016
Global Status Last Changed: 20Nov1996
Ranking Methodology Used: Ranked by inspection
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Nation: United States
National Status: N5B,N5N (05Jan1997)
Nation: Canada
National Status: N5B,NUN,N5M (12Dec2017)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Alabama (S3N), Arizona (S3B,S5N), Arkansas (S3N), California (SNRB,SNRN,SNRM), Colorado (S3B), Florida (SNA), Idaho (S1N,S2B), Illinois (SNA), Iowa (S2N), Kansas (S1B), Kentucky (SNA), Louisiana (S4N), Michigan (SNRN), Minnesota (SNRB), Mississippi (SNA), Missouri (SNA), Montana (S5B), Navajo Nation (S2S3B,S4N), Nebraska (S4), Nevada (S4B), New Mexico (S3B,S5N), New York (SNRN), North Carolina (SNA), North Dakota (SNRB), Ohio (SNA), Oklahoma (S5N), Oregon (S4), South Carolina (SNA), South Dakota (S4B), Tennessee (S3N), Texas (S3B,S5N), Utah (S4B,S3N), Washington (S3B,S4N), Wisconsin (SNA), Wyoming (S4B)
Canada Alberta (S4B), British Columbia (S4B), Manitoba (S4S5B), Ontario (SNA), Saskatchewan (S5B)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: >2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: BREEDING: southwestern Canada east to Manitoba, south to northern Baja California, central Arizona, northern New Mexico, and southern Texas, east to Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, and Oklahoma, south locally to central Mexico (Chihua, Nayarit, Jalisco, Puebla); in South America (formerly) on temperate lakes in the eastern Andes of Colombia (considered full species, P. ANDINUS, by some). NON-BREEDING: mainly southern British Columbia to Guatemala on coast, and inland north to central California, northern Nevada, northern Utah, northern New Mexico, and central Texas inland; recently reported rarely but possibly regularly to El Salvador (see Stiles and Skutch 1989). The highest concentration in winter is on the Salton Sea, California (Root 1988). Also occurs in Eurasia and Africa.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: (>2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)) BREEDING: southwestern Canada east to Manitoba, south to northern Baja California, central Arizona, northern New Mexico, and southern Texas, east to Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, and Oklahoma, south locally to central Mexico (Chihua, Nayarit, Jalisco, Puebla); in South America (formerly) on temperate lakes in the eastern Andes of Colombia (considered full species, P. ANDINUS, by some). NON-BREEDING: mainly southern British Columbia to Guatemala on coast, and inland north to central California, northern Nevada, northern Utah, northern New Mexico, and central Texas inland; recently reported rarely but possibly regularly to El Salvador (see Stiles and Skutch 1989). The highest concentration in winter is on the Salton Sea, California (Root 1988). Also occurs in Eurasia and Africa.

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
NOTE: The maps for birds represent the breeding status by state and province. In some jurisdictions, the subnational statuses for common species have not been assessed and the status is shown as not-assessed (SNR). In some jurisdictions, the subnational status refers to the status as a non-breeder; these errors will be corrected in future versions of these maps. A species is not shown in a jurisdiction if it is not known to breed in the jurisdiction or if it occurs only accidentally or casually in the jurisdiction. Thus, the species may occur in a jurisdiction as a seasonal non-breeding resident or as a migratory transient but this will not be indicated on these maps. See other maps on this web site that depict the Western Hemisphere ranges of these species at all seasons of the year.
Endemism: occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, FL, IA, ID, IL, KS, KY, LA, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NM, NN, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, WA, WI, WY
Canada AB, BC, MB, ON, SK

Range Map
Note: Range depicted for New World only. The scale of the maps may cause narrow coastal ranges or ranges on small islands not to appear. Not all vagrant or small disjunct occurrences are depicted. For migratory birds, some individuals occur outside of the passage migrant range depicted. For information on how to obtain shapefiles of species ranges see our Species Mapping pages at www.natureserve.org/conservation-tools/data-maps-tools.

Range Map Compilers: NatureServe, 2002; WILDSPACETM 2002


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
IA Emmet (19063), Fremont (19071), Pocahontas (19151)
ID Ada (16001), Bannock (16005), Bear Lake (16007), Bingham (16011), Blaine (16013), Bonner (16017), Bonneville (16019), Boundary (16021), Camas (16025), Caribou (16029), Cassia (16031), Custer (16037), Franklin (16041), Fremont (16043), Jefferson (16051), Nez Perce (16069), Owyhee (16073), Power (16077), Valley (16085)
KS Barton (20009), Kearny (20093), Stafford (20185)
NE Box Butte (31013), Brown (31017), Cherry (31031), Garden (31069), Grant (31075), Hooker (31091), Lincoln (31111), Scotts Bluff (31157), Sheridan (31161), Sioux (31165)
WA Grant (53025)+, Okanogan (53047)+, Spokane (53063)+
WY Sublette (56035)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
07 Upper Des Moines (07100002)+, Middle Des Moines (07100004)+
10 Niobrara Headwaters (10150002)+, Upper Niobrara (10150003)+, Middle Niobrara (10150004)+, Snake (10150005)+, Middle North Platte-Scotts Bluff (10180009)+, Pumpkin (10180013)+, Lower North Platte (10180014)+, Lower South Platte (10190018)+, Middle Platte-Buffalo (10200101)+, Upper Middle Loup (10210001)+, Dismal (10210002)+, Upper North Loup (10210006)+, Keg-Weeping Water (10240001)+
11 Middle Arkansas-Lake Mckinney (11030001)+, Rattlesnake (11030009)+, Cow (11030011)+
14 Big Sandy (14040104)+
16 Bear Lake (16010201)+, Middle Bear (16010202)+
17 Lower Kootenai (17010104)+, Pend Oreille Lake (17010214)+, Hangman (17010306), Okanogan (17020006), Banks Lake (17020014), Idaho Falls (17040201)+, Upper Henrys (17040202)+, Lower Henrys (17040203)+, Willow (17040205)+, American Falls (17040206)+, Blackfoot (17040207)+, Portneuf (17040208)+, Lake Walcott (17040209)+, Raft (17040210)+, Beaver-Camas (17040214)+, Camas (17040220)+, Little Wood (17040221)+, Upper Owyhee (17050104)+, Lower Boise (17050114)+, North Fork Payette (17050123)+, Lower Snake-Asotin (17060103)+, Palouse (17060108), Upper Salmon (17060201)+, Upper Middle Fork Salmon (17060205)+, Clearwater (17060306)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
Help
General Description: See Kaufman (1992, Am. Birds 46:1187-1190) for detailed information on identification of birds in basic plumage. Eggs: in Oregon, mean length was 44.6 mm, mean width was 30.2 mm, and mean mass was 22.8 g (Hill et al. 1995, Condor 97:1062-1064).
Reproduction Comments: Breeding begins mid-April in south, late May-June in north. In Minnesota, nest initiation dates ranged from late May through the third week in July; nesting was moderately to highly synchronous within a colony (Boe 1994). Both adults, in turn, incubate an average of 3-4 eggs for 20-22 days. Young reportedly are independent in 3 weeks. Usually nests in colony (100 pairs on 1 lake is not unusual) on larger lakes. In Minnesota, colonies included 15 to 580+ nests, with 3-41 nests per 100 sq m (Boe 1994).
Ecology Comments: Gregarious at all times of the year. Several hundred thousand may congregate in late summer and fall at Mono Lake, California. Mass downings of migrants sometimes occur in southern Utah in December (Condor 95:470-473). In Minnesota, waves generated by high winds destroyed 44% of 2370 nests examined; nest predation rate was very low (Boe 1994).
Non-Migrant: N
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: Y
Mobility and Migration Comments: After breeding, most migrate to highly saline lakes in the Great Basin, where they molt, feed, and accumulate fat prior to flying to wintering areas. Major migration stops include: Mono Lake, California (up to 750,000 birds at peak in fall); Malheur NWR, Oregon; Bear River NWR, Utah; Great Salt Lake, Utah (up to 1.7 million individuals using the south arm of the lake; Jehl 1988). Fall migration probably peaks October-November (Johnsgard 1987). First arrivals in northern states and western provinces occur in April.
Marine Habitat(s): Near shore
Estuarine Habitat(s): Bay/sound, Lagoon, River mouth/tidal river, Tidal flat/shore
Lacustrine Habitat(s): Deep water, Shallow water
Palustrine Habitat(s): HERBACEOUS WETLAND
Habitat Comments: Marshes, ponds and lakes; in migration and winter also salt lakes, bays, estuaries and seacoasts (AOU 1983). Some migrate to coast in fall, some remain inland in loose flocks on large bodies of freshwater during winter. Nests in areas with seasonal to permanent water: marsh, marshy section of lake, sewage pond, fishpond, newly flooded area, reservoir, river backwaters. Nests over water in shallow eutrophic wetlands that are particularly vulnerable to yearly fluctuations in water levels, including periodic natural lowering due to drought (Boe 1994). In Minnesota, preferred deep fresh marshes that were more than 30 ha in size and that contained 42-100% (mean 78%) open water; used wetlands were shallower and had more submergent vegetation and less treed perimeter than did unused wetlands, and they were less likely to have a public access and received less human use in summer (Boe 1992). Nest is mound of aquatic vegetation in shallow water.
Adult Food Habits: Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Invertivore
Food Comments: Diet includes aquatic insects and larvae, small fishes, crustaceans, and other small invertebrates. Feeds on surface of water or dives under. Diet mostly brine shrimp in fall at Mono Lake, California.
Adult Phenology: Diurnal
Immature Phenology: Diurnal
Colonial Breeder: Y
Length: 32 centimeters
Weight: 297 grams
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
Help
Management Summary Not yet assessed
Help
Population/Occurrence Delineation
Help
Group Name: Grebes

Use Class: Breeding
Subtype(s): Foraging Area, Nesting Area
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Evidence of historical breeding , or current and likely recurring breeding, at a given location, minimally a reliable observation of one or more breeding pairs in appropriate habitat. Be cautious about creating EOs for observations that may represent single breeding events outside the normal breeding distribution.
Separation Barriers: None.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 10 km
Separation Justification: Separation distances are arbitrary. Unsuitable habitat: upland areas.

Home ranges during the breeding season usually quite small; each pair of Red-necked Grebes defends up to about 114 meters of shoreline and associated waters, where all activities take place (Palmer 1962). Pied-billed Grebes: average home range 1.3 hectares (a circle with a diameter of about 130 meters; Glover 1953), although occasionally as large as 35 hectares (Muller 1995).

Inferred Minimum Extent of Habitat Use (when actual extent is unknown): .11 km
Inferred Minimum Extent Justification: Based on conservative home ranges of Red-necked and Pied-billed Grebes.
Date: 28Oct2004
Author: Cannings, S., and G. Hammerson

Use Class: Nonbreeding
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Evidence of recurring presence of flocks (including historical) outside the breeding season; and potential recurring presence at a given location. Normally only areas where concentrations greater than 50 birds occur regularly for at least 20 days per year would be deemed EOs.
Separation Barriers: None.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 10 km
Separation Justification: Separation distance is arbitrary, set at 10 kilometers to define occurrences of managable size for conservation purposes. Occurrences defined primarily on the basis of areas supporting concentrations of foraging birds, rather than on the basis of distinct populations.

Unsuitable habitat: upland areas.

Date: 28Oct2004
Author: Cannings, S., and G. Hammerson
Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 13May1996
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): Hammerson, G.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
Help
  • Alabama Ornithological Society. 2006. Field checklist of Alabama birds. Alabama Ornithological Society, Dauphin Island, Alabama. [Available online at http://www.aosbirds.org/documents/AOSChecklist_april2006.pdf ]

  • American Ornithologists Union (AOU). 1998. Check-list of North American Birds. 7th edition. American Ornithologists Union, Washington, D.C. 829 pages.

  • American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1983. Check-list of North American Birds, 6th edition. Allen Press, Inc., Lawrence, Kansas. 877 pp.

  • American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1998. Check-list of North American birds. Seventh edition. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C. [as modified by subsequent supplements and corrections published in The Auk]. Also available online: http://www.aou.org/.

  • Andrews, R. R. and R. R. Righter. 1992. Colorado Birds. Denver Museum of Natural History, Denver. 442 pp.

  • Baillie, J.L. 1957. Recent additions to Ontario's bird list. Ontario Field Biologist 11:1-3.

  • Banks, R. C., and M. R. Browning. 1995. Comments on the status of revived old names for some North American birds. Auk 112:633-648.

  • Bierly, M.L. 1980. Bird Finding in Tennessee. 3825 Bed- ford Ave., Nashville, TN 37125.

  • BirdLife International. 2004b. Threatened birds of the world 2004. CD ROM. BirdLife International, Cambridge, UK.

  • Boe, J. S. 1992. wetland selection by eared grebes, PODICEPS NIGRICOLLIS, in Minnesota. Can. Field-Nat. 106:480-488.

  • Boe, J. S. 1994. Nest site selection by eared grebes in Minnesota. Condor 96:19-35.

  • Boe, J., and G. L. Nuechterlein. 1990. Colony site and nest site selection by eared grebes in Minnesota. Final report submitted to the Nongame Wildlife Program of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. 24 pp.

  • Boe, Janet, and Gary L. Nuechterlein. 1987 - 1990. Colony Site and Nest Site Selection by Eared Grebes in Minnesota. Funded by the MN DNR, Section of Wildlife, Nongame Research Program. Results in unpublished report.

  • Bull, John. 1964. Birds of the New York area. New York: Harper and Row Publications 540 pp.

  • Bull, John. 1974. Birds of New York State. Doubleday, Garden City, New York. 655 pp.

  • Colorado Bird Observatory. 1997. 1996 Reference Guide to the Monitoring and Conservation Status of Colorado's Breeding Birds. Colorado Bird Observatory, Colorado Division of Wildlife, Great Outdoors Colorado Trust Fund, and Partners, March 21, 1997.

  • DICKINSON, MARY B., ED. 1999. FIELD GUIDE TO THE BIRDS OF NORTH AMERICA, 3RD ED. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY, WASHINGTON, D.C. 480 PP.

  • Dobos, R.Z. 1997. Ontario Bird Records Committee report for 1996. Ontario Birds 15(2):47-66.

  • Dunn, E. H., C. M. Downes, and B. T. Collins. 2000. The Canadian Breeding Bird Survey, 1967-1998. Canadian Wildlife Service Progress Notes No. 216. 40 pp.

  • Elder, D.H. and R.M. Simms. 1997. First Ontario breeding record for Eared Grebe. Ontario Birds 15(2):72-73.

  • Glover, F. A. 1953. Nesting ecology of the pied-billed grebe in northwestern Iowa. Wilson Bulletin 65:32-9.

  • Godfrey, W. E. 1986. The birds of Canada. Revised edition. National Museum of Natural Sciences, Ottawa. 596 pp. + plates.

  • Harrison, C. 1978. A Field Guide to the Nests, Eggs and Nestlings of North American Birds. Collins, Cleveland, Ohio.

  • Howell, S. N. G., and S. Webb. 1995. A guide to the birds of Mexico and northern Central America. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.

  • Imhof, T. A. 1976. Alabama birds. Second edition. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa. 445 pages.

  • James, R.D. 1991. Annotated Checklist of the Birds of Ontario (2nd ed., rev.). Life Sciences Miscellaneous Publications, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto. 128 pp.

  • Jehl, J. R. 1988. Biology of the Eared Grebe and Wilson's Phalarope in the nonbreeding seson: a study of adaptations to saline lakes. Cooper Ornithol. Soc., Studies in Avian Biology No. 12. iv + 74 pp.

  • Johnsgard, P. A. 1987. Diving birds of North America. Univ. Nebraska Press, Lincoln. xii + 292 pp.

  • Lowery, George H. 1974. The Birds of Louisiana. LSU Press. 651pp.

  • Mirarchi, R.E., editor. 2004. Alabama Wildlife. Volume 1. A checklist of vertebrates and selected invertebrates: aquatic mollusks, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. The University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 209 pages.

  • Muller, M. J. 1995. Pied-billed Grebes nesting on Green Lake, Seattle, Washington. Washington Birds 4:35-59.

  • Nelson, D., and M. F. Carter. 1990. Birds of selected wetlands of the San Luis Valley. Unpublished report to Colorado Division of Wildlife, Denver. 38pp.

  • New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Checklist of the amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals of New York State, including their protective status. Nongame Unit, Wildlife Resources Center, Delmar, NY.

  • Nicholson, C.P. 1997. Atlas of the breeding birds of Tennessee. The University of Tennessee Press. 426 pp.

  • Oberholser, H.C. 1974. The bird life of Texas. 2 vols. Univ. of Texas Press, Austin.

  • Palmer, R. S. (editor). 1962. Handbook of North American birds. Vol. 1. Loons through flamingos. Yale University Press, New Haven. 567 pp.

  • Parker III, T. A., D. F. Stotz, and J. W. Fitzpatrick. 1996. Ecological and distributional databases for neotropical birds. The University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

  • Parks Canada. 2000. Vertebrate Species Database. Ecosystems Branch, 25 Eddy St., Hull, PQ, K1A 0M5.

  • Paton, P. W., C. Kneedy, and E. Sorensen. 1992. Chronology of shorebird and ibis use of selected marshes at Great Salt Lake. Utah Birds 8(1):1-19.

  • Peterson, R. T. 1980. A field guide to the birds of eastern and central North America. Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, MA. 384 pages.

  • Peterson, R.T. 1980b. A field guide to the birds of eastern and central North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston.

  • Peterson, R.T. 1990b. A field guide to western birds. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston.

  • Poole, A. F. and F. B. Gill. 1992. The birds of North America. The American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C. and The Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, PA.

  • Rappole, J.H., Morton, E.S., Lovejoy, T.E. and Ruos, J.L. 1983. Nearctic avian migrants in the Neotropics. U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service and World Wildlife Fund, Washington D.C.

  • Root, T. 1988. Atlas of wintering North American birds: An analysis of Christmas Bird Count data. University of Chicago Press. 336 pp.

  • See SERO listing

  • Semenchuk, G.P. 1992. The atlas of breeding birds of Alberta. Federation of Alberta Naturalists. 391 pp.

  • Sibley, D. A. 2000a. The Sibley guide to birds. Alfred A. Knopf, New York.

  • Stiles, F. G. and A. F. Skutch. 1989. A guide to the birds of Costa Rica. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, New York, USA. 511 pp.

  • Terres, J. K. 1980. The Audubon Society encyclopedia of North American birds. Alfred A. Knopf, New York.

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