Bill shorter than the head, depressed at the base, slightly recurved at the tip, black: iris single: distance from the nostrils to the tip of the bill six lines and a half.
P. auritus, Temm. Man. d'Orn. torn. ii. p. 725. Eared Grebe, Mont. Orn. Diet. & Supp. with fig. Bew. Brit. Birds, vol. ii. p. 157. Selb. Illust. vol. H. p. 399. pl. 74.
Entire length twelve inches: length of the bill (from the forehead) eleven lines, (from the gape) one inch one line and a half; of the tarsus one inch six lines and a half; from the carpus to the end of the wing five inches.
(Adult). Cheeks, forehead, crown, a short occipital crest, and upper part of the neck, deep black: sides of the head ornamented with two tufts of long slender feathers, of a pale yellow passing into deep orange; these tufts arise from behind the upper part of the eye, and passing backwards cover the orifice of the ears: throat, lower part of the neck, sides of the breast, and all the upper parts, dull black: secondary quills white: flanks and thighs deep chestnut-red, mixed with dusky; the rest of the under parts pure white: bill black, reddish at the base: irides vermilion: legs externally dusky ash, internally greenish ash. (Young of the year). Closely resembling the young of the last species, but may always be distinguished by the peculiar shape of the bill, which is depressed at the base, and slightly recurved at the tip: the iris is also of one colour, and the white on the cheeks more extended, reaching down the sides of the neck. (Egg). Dirty yellowish white: long. diam. one inch nine lines; trans, diam. one inch three lines.
A rare species in this country, particularly in the adult state. Met with principally in the winter months, but, according to Montagu, breeds in the fens of Lincolnshire. Chiefly frequents lakes and inland waters, occasionally the estuaries of rivers. Nest placed amongst reeds and other aquatic herbage. Eggs three or four in number.