A Great Crested Grebe in Russia - Observation of the Week, 12/4/18

This Great Crested Grebe, seen in Russia by @zveroboy57, is our Observation of the Week!

As iNaturalist users have continued to fill in the map with their observations, one of the most conspicuous empty spaces has been Russia and Central Asia. True, Russia is an enormous country with vast wild expanses where few people live, but the overall observation levels for Russia have been pretty low until recently. We started seeing an increase in late 2017 and then a huge spike over the past month or two. This chart of observations in Russia really says it all:

Much of this increase is due to Russian wildlife photographers who have started to share their archive of fantastic photos with the iNaturalist community, and one of those photographers is Alexander, who photographed the Great Crested Grebe you see above.

Great Crested Grebes range through much of Eurasia, as well as parts of northern Africa and Australia, and are large (for a grebe), with a wingspan of 59–73 cm (23–29 in). In the summer both males and females are resplendent in their breeding plumage and like many other grebes they participate in an elaborate courtship pas-de-deux, mirroring each others’ motions and displaying their crests. They are excellent divers and hunt for fish and other underwater prey. These grebes were hunted almost to extinction in the United Kingdom, as their head feathers were highly sought after.

Alexander (above, in wildlife photography mode) says that he has been “fond of nature from childhood,” and has recently become interested in wildlife photography. Of the Great Crest Grebes, he says “[they] are not uncommon, but they are very cautious and it is not easy to photograph them.” He recently discovered iNaturalist via Facebook and now uses it “to show my photos to the whole world.”

- by Tony Iwane


- Here are the most-faved iNaturalist observations from Russia!

- By the way, Great Crested Grebe chicks are pretty adorable.

- One of the more amazing feeds on Twitter is from Russian deep sea fisherman Roman Fedortsov, who shares photos of the awesome creatures he finds.

Posted by tiwane tiwane, December 05, 2018 06:53 AM

Comments

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Love to see more Eastern European observations on Inat. I am in Slovakia, which is bordering with Ukraine and I often get IDs from fellows from Russia. Thank you and greetings!

Posted by fero 6 days ago (Flag)
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What a beautiful and interesting bird! It is always interesting to see photographs, read about and hear from nature lovers in other parts of the world.

Posted by kenramos 6 days ago (Flag)
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I did not think that my photograph of the Great Toadstool would deserve such attention. I will take into account for the future, I will try next summer to shoot them for more.

Posted by zveroboy57 6 days ago (Flag)
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and thanks to @dschigel for helping coordinate the Russian translation!

Posted by loarie 6 days ago (Flag)
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Yes, and thank you to @dschigel for the translation work on iNat and on my message to the observer!

Posted by tiwane 6 days ago (Flag)
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Not only this shot but all bird photos of Alexander are awesome and i congratulate him with that photo record!
I am very happy about russian observations, because from june 2016 till now doing the translation of iNat web and mobile interface into Russian language, Russian translation is one of the few 99% complete and i hope and see that number of observation from different regions of Russia are really increase.
I especially appreciate that political issues do not exist in iNat and friendly attitude, help and identification come from everywhere.
Greetings to all!
Katya

Posted by katya 6 days ago (Flag)
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Awesome - thanks Katya!

Posted by loarie 5 days ago (Flag)
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This is wonderful! I look forward to seeing more observations from that part of the world!

Posted by artemis224 5 days ago (Flag)

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