Georgia Birding and Nature

Eared Grebes
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Eared Grebes in Georgia

Grebes are intriguing birds.  They seem to have a mystery about them.  Maybe because we see them as explorers of the deep, as if plunging into our subconscious.  Garbed in cryptic winter plumage, their piercing eyes spy back at us.


Grebes have been an interesting family of birds for us.  My family and I found a WESTERN GREBE in Georgia in 1979.  I remember it clearly and because of that bird I am probably still looking for rare birds today.  Interestingly, that bird would represent the only live sighting of a Western Grebe in Georgia.  And "yes", we were able to separate it from the somewhat similar Clarke's Grebe. 


RED-NECKED GREBES are very rare in Georgia.  Michael and I have only found four or five.  However, GA now gets I guess on average one report, usually unconfirmed, a year.  Like a floating alien, neck telescoping, there is just something about a Red-necked Grebe. 


Also in 1979 we found our first EARED GREBE in Georgia.  This may represent the first record of Eared Grebe for Georgia.  For a long time after that, they were frustratingly hard to find in Georgia. 


Recently I have been able to find them more reliably.  Years ago Michael and I would find one or two on Lake Juliette.  Then we found over ten.  A few years ago I periodically reported the status of the grebes there.  My high count from there is 40. 


For what it’s worth, the Annotated Checklist of Georgia Birds (2003) lists the high count for Eared Grebe in Georgia as 11 in 1995.   Fun to see whatever the number! 


Eric Beohm 2005

Eared Grebe at Rum Creek 12/27/03

Eared Grebes at Lake Juliette

Here are some Eared Grebes that I have found at E. L. Huie LAF in Clayton County.  -  Eric Beohm

I and others found this Eared Grebe at E. L. Huie 08/23/06.

                              I found another one there on 09/08/06.

Michael and I found this one at E. L. Huie, 11/25/2003 which stayed for a long time.


I found three Eared Grebes at E. L. Huie on 3/14/06.  Unbeknownst to me, they were already independently reported by Steve Slayton.  E. L. Huie is visited by birders on a daily basis.

Eared Grebes in breeding plumage at Rum Creek 08/27/06.

Eared Grebe at Rum Creek WMA 09/03/06.

Seven Eared Grebes at Rum Creek WMA 09/03/06.

Eared Grebe at Lake Seminole GA 12/06/06.

Eared Grebe at Lake Hartwell GA 02/26/2015

Note the structural difference. Peak over eye. Thin neck.



Eared Grebe swam by some Horned Grebes. Note the difference.

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