Podiceps cristatus   (Linnaeus,  1758) (Bird)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Aves

Image copyrights: pbase

Size: 46-51 cm.

Voice: Usually silent in winter.

Habits: Swims with body low and erect neck, both male and female perform elaborate courtship display. Breeds in Ladakh between 4700 and 5200m from June to August, also known to breed in Gujarat, winter migrant up to Vindhyas.

Sexes alike, but the diagnostics less developed in female. Adult: A tailless aquatic bird charracterised by slender white neck and straight pointed bill, two upstanding, backwardly directed ear tufts above head and a frill of chestnut-and-black elongated fearthers below the head. In winter (non-breeding) these 'ear tufts' much reduced, and in young birds absent. However, it has the black forehead, crown and crest, a blackish line from gape to eye, white lores and sides of the head, chin and throat, dark nape and back, mottled brown and rufous flanks and white underparts. Juvenile: Similar to non-breeding but has brown striping on cheeks.

Breeding season: June to August. Nest- a conspicuous mass of water weeds c. 45 to 60 cm. in diameter with a depression in the middle, on floating mounds of grass and rubbish 20 to 100 meters from the bank, loosely anchored to growing weeds. Eggs- 3 to 5, very pale sea-green with an overlay of chalky white calcium deposit, usually becoming stained brown by contact with the soggy nest.

Synonym (s)

Common Name (s)
• Great Crested Grebe (English)
• Chotili dubki (Gujrati)
• Shiva-hanh
Economic Importance and Threats

Habitat:  Coastal
Trophic Level:  Consumer
Prey:  Fish, frogs, tadpoles, aquatic insects, occasionally macrophytes
IUCN Status:  Least Concern


• Gujarat, Gulf of Kachchh (Lat: 22.6) (Long: 69.5) INDIA
• Gujarat, Gulf of Kachchh INDIA
• Gujarat, Porbandar (Lat: 21.63) (Long: 69.6) INDIA
• Gujarat, Bhavnagar INDIA
• Gujarat, Viramgam INDIA
• Gujarat, Kutch INDIA
• Assam INDIA
• Manipur INDIA
• Orissa INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • (2001) Sanctuary Asia natural history species: Species checklist: Birds Sanctuary Asia Sanctuary Magazine Available at - http://www.sanctuaryasia.com/resources/speciechklist/bird.php
  • Khan, RA (2002) The ecology and faunal diversity of two floodplain Ox Bow lakes of south eastern West Bengal Occasional paper no. 195 Records of the Zoological Survey of India ZSI, Kolkata 20821 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Symens, P and Suhaibani, A (1993) The impact of Gulf War oil spills on wintering seabird populations along the northern Arabian Gulf coast of Saudi Arabia, 1991 Sandgrouse 15 37-43 Available at - ZOOR13000057326
  • Abbaasi, SA (1997) Wetlands of India-Ecology and Threats Discovery Publishing House,New Delhi II 1-182 Available at - NIO, RC Kochi
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at - http://www.marinespecies.org
  • (2003) IUCN Red list of threatened species Available at - http://www.iucnredlist.org/
  • Kumar, A; Sati, JP; Tak, PC and Alfred, JRB (2005) Handbook on Indian wetland birds and their conservation Zoological Survey of India, Dehra Dun 468 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • PBase Available at - http://www.pbase.com/
  • Subba Rao, NV and Sastry, DRK (2005) Fauna of Marine National Park, Gulf of Kuchchh (Gujarat) ZSI 79 pp Available at - NCL, Pune
  • (1997) Coastal marine environment of Gujarat 178pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Vernacular names of the Birds of the Indian Subcontinent Buceros, Envis newsletter: Avian Ecology & Inland Wetlands 62pp Available at - http://www.bnhsenvis.nic.in/pdf/BUCEROS%203%20(1).pdf
  • Ali S and Ripley SD (1968) Handbook of the birds of India and Pakistan Oxford university press 1 1-368pp Available at - NIO

Page last updated on:2013-02-07

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