• East view from Crissy Field overlook with old Coast Guard station on left and city on right

    Presidio of San Francisco


Western Grebe

(Aechmophorus occidentalis)
Western Grebe
A Western Grebe swims at Crissy Marsh.
Will Elder, NPS

Natural History: This bird feeds on fish by pursuing them and diving into the water, but it also eats invertebrates. It is commonly found resting on water. This species nests colonies from May to August. It breeds in large expanses of water with nest platforms often floating in emergent vegetation. It can often be found in mixed flocks with Clark's Grebe.

General Distribution: In the Presidio, this species can be found in bays and the ocean.

Frequency: This animal is abundantly found during the fall, winter, and spring months.

Identifying Characteristics: This species is distinguished by its long, white, swanlike neck. It displays a dark/black plumage on its upper side and is white below.

Presidio Birds main page

Did You Know?

Franciscan monk

In 1776, Father Pedro Font wrote, "The port of San Francisco...is a marvel of nature, and might well be called a harbor of harbors...And I think if it could be well settled like Europe there would not be anything more beautiful in all the world."