Black-necked Grebe

Podiceps nigricollis

  1. Wildlife
  2. Birds
  3. Grebes and divers
  4. Black-necked Grebe


Grebes are diving waterbirds, feeding on small fish and aquatic invertebrates. The Black-necked Grebe is a small grebe, about the same size as a Moorhen. A rare breeding bird, it is also uncommon in winter.

How to identify

In the summer, the Black-necked Grebe can be distinguished from the Slavonian Grebe by the smaller yellow ear tufts and the black (not red) neck. It looks very similar in its winter plumage, but is a bit darker and has a slightly up-turned bill.

Where to find it

Breeds in just a handful of places around the country, often in Black-headed Gull colonies. May turn up in the winter on the sea or on lakes and reservoirs.


When to find it

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December

How can people help

The Black-necked Grebe is a very rare nesting bird in Britain. The survival of this and other waterbirds is threatened by the loss and degradation of many of our wetland habitats. The Wildlife Trusts manage many wetland nature reserves for the benefit of the wildlife they support. You can help by supporting your local Trust and becoming a member; you'll find out about exciting wildlife happenings, events on your doorstep and volunteering opportunities, and be helping local wildlife along the way.

Species information

Common name
Black-necked Grebe
Latin name
Podiceps nigricollis
Grebes and divers
Length: 31cm Weight: 260-360g
Conservation status
Classified in the UK as an Amber List species under the Birds of Conservation Concern review.