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juvenile grebe & female duck?

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photo 1: i think this is a young western grebe but i would like to confirm - never seen one in this sort of "adolescent" phase before? there were no adult grebes in the vicinity. taken this week (Feb 2019) in san francisco ca. 



photo 2: same day on the same lake, is this a female ruddy duck? i think this one is also fairly easy but i only got this distant photo


thank you!

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I should have said more.


never seen one in this sort of "adolescent" phase before?

It's winter plumage for the horned grebe. The eared grebe looks almost just like it. I knew it was one of the two but checked Sibley's to double check which one. Sibley's shows that the tip of the eared grebe is dark and the tip of the horned is whitish. Those little details sometimes help with ID's... if only I could remember ALL of them better.

A western grebe would look bigger, longer neck, longer and lighter colored bill.

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1) I agree with Horned Grebe. From the 1st photo, there seems to be a pretty clear line between the white of the cheek and the black on the head. In Eared, the black tends to extend into the white cheek. I love the photo of it diving!

2) I agree with female Ruddy Duck.

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