Horned Grebe Click Bait!

Mid-February a Horned Grebe was brought to Humboldt Wildlife Care Center after being found on the strand of South Spit following a brief storm that brought a heavier swell to our region. The North coast of California, is winter home to almost all species of North American grebes.

This grebe’s only problem was being too thin. Otherwise, the storm had probably beached the little bird. Because all grebes are strictly aquatic (they even build floating nests!) once beached, getting back to the water isn’t that easy. Evolved to a life of diving in pursuit of fish, their legs are positioned far back on their bodies. Walking for these birds is nearly impossible. They also need a fair amount of open water to get into the air. In this vulnerable state, it was fortunate s/he was found by a kind-hearted person rather than a dog, or some other animal known to harm to wildlife…

After two weeks in care, the grebe was ready to get back in the ocean. Lucinda Adamson and a couple of our beloved volunteers, Matt and Jeannie Gunn, took him to the Samoa Peninsula. Humboldt Bay is a bird’s world and this bird was eager to rejoin it! (see pictures below!)

Your support made this bird’s rescue possible. Aquatic species require specialized that cannot be accomplished without skill and specialized equipment. If you haven’t contributed, please consider making a donation or sharing our stories with your neighbors and friends. As always, thank you for your love of wild animals and thank you for being a part of this life-saving work.

HOGR release 3:3:14 - 01Back into the sea. Jeannie Gunn places the Horned grebe back into Humboldt bay.

HOGR release 3:3:14 - 03Quickly swimming away!

HOGR release 3:3:14 - 04In winter plumage, the Horned grebe is much less conspicuous.

HOGR release 3:3:14 - 06

HOGR release 3:3:14 - 07

HOGR release 3:3:14 - 08Humboldt Bay and the Elk River Bottoms in the background. A nice place to winter!

HOGR release 3:3:14 - 11Jeannie and Lucinda watch their ex-patient re-enter his wild and free life.

© Bird Ally X 2014 – all photos Laura Corsiglia/BAX