Little Grebe catching a newt (Pleurodeles waltl)

This Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis) photographed while catching a sharp-ribbed newt (Pleurodeles waltl) at a small pond near Sidi Bettache, western Morocco (Saad Rih). The prey, also known as Iberian ribbed newt, is a near threatened Ibero-Moroccan endemic.

The Little Grebe is mainly piscivorous (fish-eater), although it’s known to take bigger prey such as newts (Wilkinson 2008) and even small mammals (Fisher 2005).

References:

  • Fisher, R. 2005. Little Grebe swallowing small mammal. British Birds 98: 156. 
  • Wilkinson, C. 2008. Little Grebe catching newt. British Birds 101: 200. 
A Little Grebe just caught a Sharp-ribbed Newt (Pleurodeles waltl), Sidi Bettache, Morocco (Saad Rih).
A Little Grebe just caught a Sharp-ribbed Newt (Pleurodeles waltl), Sidi Bettache, Morocco (Saad Rih).

1 thought on “Little Grebe catching a newt (Pleurodeles waltl)”

  1. Thanks Kyle for your comment!

    Yes, it’s a pretty big prey for the little bird. As the cited references show, the species is known to catch some big preys now and then. But I think this won’t be a big problem for these secondary prey species.

    Unfortunately, I don’t know the exact outcome of this encounter.

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