A Western Grebe in late Summer

A late Summer Western GrebeWestern Grebe in late Summer – Nikon D810, f8, 1/1600, ISO 500, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light

I’ve been thinking about warmer, sunnier days lately because the weather here has included lots of gray skies and low light but at least this year we are at above average snow pack except for one area in Utah. We need every bit of the snow that has fallen this winter.

I took this image of a Western Grebe in late summer last year at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge when the marsh vegetation has started to turn gold and mornings had begun to feel crisp and invigorating. There are still young grebes begging to be fed at the refuge during the crossover from summer to fall and they can be quite noisy along the auto tour route.

Late summer into the fall is a wonderful time to be at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge because of the grand views and the thousands of birds, including juveniles, that can be found there.

Our National Wildlife Refuges are treasures we that need to keep in public hands.

Life is good.



  1. Kei February 7, 2016 at 3:18 am

    I love grebes, they’re such interesting birds!
    Just yesterday on our hike here in Germany we saw a pair of Great Crested Grebes (the largest of the Old World Grebes). They still had their winter plumage, obviously, but still beautiful and fascinating to see them!

  2. Kathie February 6, 2016 at 6:59 am

    Mia, I got to see around a hundred Western grebes with Chris R. when we were in Colorado together last October, but there were all so distant that I could not see those gorgeous red eyes! I would love to see one this close again. Nice picture.

  3. Elephant's Child February 5, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    This is an amazing image. I love the mystery you have captured in the grebes expression (yes I know, I am anthromorphising again). And the water looks like a sensuous fabric, giving the impression of a Japanese print.

  4. Molly February 5, 2016 at 7:38 am

    Something about this picture makes me think of James Bond, or La Femme Nikita. I take one look at that beak and think, “awfully glad I’m not a fish.” I’m not a photographer, but this bird looks particularly life-like to me, like I could reach out and touch it. Depth of frame? Lighting?

    • Mia McPherson February 5, 2016 at 7:41 am

      Molly, when I looked at this grebe’s eyes I thought they had a “come hither” look to them! Depth of frame. lighting, sharpness and details help. Thank you.

  5. Bob McPherson February 5, 2016 at 6:12 am

    Beautiful image Mia

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