Got close and personal with a Western grebe today. It was 'rescued' from the middle of the road near the Refuge HQ. Carried wrapped in a woman's sweater into the HQ, we explained to its rescuer how grebes can't walk well, nor take flight from the ground. Their legs are very short and placed near their rear end. On the other hand, they are excellent swimmers and divers. This one probably was blown down by the strong winds today.
We took the bird down to the pond and let it loose in the water. It was happy to be on water; flapped its wings, dove under and up through the water like a dolphin, and paddled away. I understand their courtship rituals are really incredible as pairs literally dance together on top of the water.
I look forward to seeing this in the spring.
Labels: Oregon, wildlife refuges