Monday, March 21, 2011

Watch out for those pincers!

Pied-billed GrebePied-billed Grebe, Commonwealth Lake, Beaverton, Oregon, 2 February 2011 by Greg Gillson.


The Pied-billed Grebe above has a tiger by the tail! Well, actually, it's a crayfish, but still... it better be careful!

In one study in the East, crustaceans such as crayfish made up about 20% of the diet of Pied-billed Grebes, fish 20%, and aquatic insects most of the rest. However, crayfish were consumed primarily in the winter.

Crayfish are not tolerant of polluted water so, evidently, the water in this small lake in a busy city park is not too bad.

Crayfish are also called crawfish or crawdads. Though it's been quite a while since I've been to a crawdad feed, I remember liking them better than lobster, crab, and many kinds of shrimp.

Suddenly I have this craving for grilled shrimp....

I must find the behavior of Pied-billed Grebes interesting, or at least photogenic, as my previous posts on this bird discuss sinking and feather shuffling.


  1. As a Boy Scout, we used to camp along the Boise River, catch a bucket full of crawdads and boil them up for lunch. They were really pretty good.

  2. While it is difficult to be certain from this photo, I believe this is probably a non-native, invasive RUSTY CRAYFISH (see: ). This species prefers ponds and has a much higher tolerance for disturbed sites.