The graceful and beautiful great crested grebe is a water bird that arrives in Estonia from Southern and Western Europe immediately after the ice melts in April. The 2000-3000 great crested grebe couples of Estonia inhabit larger lakes with diverse flora and bays filled with reed on the coastline. They anchor their floating nests made from different plants to the plants on the shore. The great crested grebe catches its main food – fish, smaller water animals, and shrimp in the sea – by skilful manoeuvring underwater. The great crested grebes leave Estonia in autumn in October, but if the ice conditions permit some may stay here for the winter.
BirdLife Estonia has been selecting the bird of the year from 1995, the great crested grebe is the 26th bird of the year. More information about the great crested grebe is available on the bird of the year homepage www.eoy.ee/tuttpytt.