I was wondering if I'm going to see a Black-necked Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis) in Beppu this winter or not. I finally found one in a small port behind my dorm on February 13. It was a grey and rainy day. I checked the port from the kitchen's window as usual and saw the grebe swimming with a few Great Crested Grebes. Even though it was raining, I took my camera out with an umbrella and got some photos of it. I didn't get many decent shots due to the very low speed shutter but at least the bird was cooperative. It seemed a bit exhausted and that might be the reason why it was so tame.
|Non-breeding Black-necked Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis)|
|It came so close that I couldn't fit it into a frame.|
I noticed how the bird occasionally closed it left eye due to the tiredness. I guess it was blown from the open sea by the rainstorm and somehow ended up here in the port. It was active diving and searching for food though. It would dive back and forth along the port in the same pattern, so it was not difficult for me to take photos of it since I could expect where it would appear again from the water.
|It occasionally closed it left eye.|
|First time for me to see a grebe bathing|
|The much larger relative, Great Crested Grebe (Podiceps cristatus)|
Here's a video of the Black-necked Grebe preening