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A large, elegant, black-and-white grebe, the Western Grebe breeds in lakes and ponds across the American West and winters primarily off the Pacific Coast. The very similar Clark's Grebe was long thought to be the same species. Both species have a dramatic, choreographed courtship display, in which the birds rush across the water with their long necks extended.
Small lake in natural grassland preserve, surrounded by agricultural land.
These two Western Grebes were 2 of 7 that came into the Birds of Prey Foundation after a brutal cold snap in Colorado. All had crash landed on icy-wet roads thinking it was open water. Once these water birds were grounded they were unable to take flight again. Two of the 7 had to be euthanized for severe traumatic injuries, 3 were released back into the wild within a week. These two, in addition to their bruises and road rash had moderate frostbite on their toes. However, time and antibiotics allowed them to heal with no permanent damage! They were released close to where they were found. As you can see they were very happy to be free again!