Family Grebes (Podicipedidae)


Titicaca Grebe (Rollandia microptera)


French: Grèbe microptère German: Titikakataucher Spanish: Zampullín del Titicaca
Other common names: Titicaca Flightless Grebe

Podiceps micropterus


, 1868,

Lake Titicaca


Sometimes included in Podiceps or in monospecific genus Centropelma. Monotypic.


L Arapa and L Umayo (SE Peru) through L Titicaca to L Uru-uru and L Poopó (W Bolivia).

Descriptive notes

28–45 cm. Medium-sized, heavy-billed grebe with white lower face over most of foreneck, contrasting with brown to blackish crown; wings very small. Breeding adult ... read more


Commonest call “gyak”, not unlike that of Eurasian Jackdaw (Corvus monedula), used for... read more


Large open lakes with reedbeds or floating vegetation, above 3000 m in high Andes. Breeds... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly fish, almost exclusively pupfish (Orestias), which estimated to comprise more than 90% (by mass) of diet; also some aquatic... read more


Laying occurs in all months, with peak in Nov–Dec; multiple-brooded. Solitary, or occasionally in loose colonies; territorial.... read more


Sedentary; flightless.

Status and conservation

ENDANGERED. Global population estimated at 1600 mature individuals in 2003. Declining. Confined to open freshwater lakes on altiplano from L Arapa and L Umayo, in SE Peru, S... read more

Recommended citation

Llimona, F., del Hoyo, J., Christie, D.A., Jutglar, F. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Titicaca Grebe (Rollandia microptera). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 27 February 2020).