Picture taken two days ago at the released
Yesterday, while heading into town; I checked two times and didn’t see the Red-necked Grebe anywhere along the Allegheny River. Although I did see many ducks swimming around like the Common Merganser, Black Duck, Mallard, Canada Goose, Common Goldeneye and a Long-tailed Ducks. It was very possible that the Red-necked Grebe was down stream (where I didn’t have access to look).
Today, I headed back into town and stopped to check and see if the Grebe was around. I was focusing on a Horned Grebe that was swimming around and then suddenly the Red-necked Grebe appeared out of no where. Could this be the same bird?? I watched for quite a while with hopes of getting a quick glance of its band. Of course I left my spotting scope at home and thought maybe the pictures would show something. Obviously it didn’t flash its bling bling but I feel very confident this is the same bird (since we only get one or two a year (in the month of March) in this location). Most all other birds observed yesterday were still in the same spots except a flock of Goldeneyes. People were looking out their windows while this guy was parked on the wrong side of the road taking pictures of something in the water (You would think that by now they would be use to us birders in this area).
I spent a great amount of time watching this Red-necked Grebe and took pictures when it would allow me (although quite a distance away). It acted like a typical Grebe spending most of its time fishing along the ice edge. Its head (like in this edited photo above) would go under water searching for minnows, head up for a few minutes and then back underwater searching again. Suddenly it would disappear underwater for ~ 1 minute and then end up 200 feet away from where it disappeared. I only noticed it once come up (because I was able to anticipate where it was coming up) with something in its bill.
While riding the current down stream the Red-necked Grebe spent its time preening its feathers (as in the above photo). These were the precious moments where I drastically trying looking for a glimpse of the band. I do feel confident that this guy is doing very well and probably trying to gaining enough strength to continue its migration to wherever it is going. Red-necked Grebes migrate primarily at night; although I doubt this evening it is going anywhere (even if it has built up its strength). We are currently being hit with freezing rain and additional snow accumulations following the overnight. If I see or hear anything else, I promise to let everyone know.