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Great Crested Grebe at Traeth Lafan

Great experts of swimming and diving but unable to walk on dry land


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These cute ducks with a punk hairdo and feet adorned with bizarre webbing resembling an airplane flap are quite the sight to behold. With these remarkable legs, a grebe catches its prey at great speed and can travel long distances. Unlike other waterfowl, each of the grebe’s feathers is attached to their skin at a right angle with a curl to the tip. This allows for adjusting the own buoyancy on water and gives the ability to dive quickly and quietly. Some species of grebes are long-distance migrants.

In Wales, they gather at Traeth Lafan, the area is covered with tidal sands and mudflats, to spend cold winter months. It is one of the biggest great crested grebe populations in Britain. Typically they build their floating nests fixed to water vegetation.

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