This is a typical Eared Grebe. It is a small bird, about the size of a dove.
I've written about grebes, from time to time. Grebes are aquatic birds that spend part of their year in the Bay Area. Many grebes were affected by the terrible oil spill last fall. We see loads of these amusing little birds at our local urban oasis, Lake Merritt.
Right now, our local male eared grebes are lookin' for ladies, and are sporting their ultra-sexy breeding plumage. What woman could possibly resist a man with such glorious eyelashes?
Hard to believe it, but that really is the same animal.