The Black-necked grebe (Podiceps nigricollis), known in North America as the eared grebe, occurs on every continent except Australia and Antarctica. It has beautiful golden tufts of feathers on its face. They experience vast fluctuations in weight and muscle mass throughout the year, going through a number of flightless periods. It is possible that Black-necked Grebes spend a total of as much as ten months of the year unable to fly – the longest period of any flying bird. It breeds in vegetated areas of freshwater lakes across Europe, Asia, Africa, northern South America and the southwest and western United States. In winter, this small grebe is white with a poorly defined black cap, which distinguishes it from the crisper-looking Slavonian Grebe.