The first national survey of the Southern Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus australis was carried out in the South Island, New Zealand, from 29 November to 14 December 1980. 170 adults were counted and 20+ more estimated on 28 of the 84 lakes covered during the survey. When other recent records are included, this survey indicates that the New Zealand population of adult Crested Grebes is about 240-250. The bulk (c. 55%) of the population was in Canterbury, where most birds were concentrated on two groups of lakes. Total numbers were probably greater than those recorded in 1970 but local declines have occurred. Some breeding data are also presented.