Eider Somateria mollisima

BoCC Amber list

Best time to see: early Sep to end May

Key facts

Large stocky seaduck with steep flat forehead, famous for its soft down

Habitat: sea and estuaries

Resident and breeds along the northern coasts of Britain; winter visitor elsewhere


Male: mainly white and black above with long sloping forehead; female is brown and buff finely barred; 60 cm

Forms small flocks on coastal waters where birds dive to feed

Eats crustaceans, molluscs and other invertebrates; flight very powerful and direct

© Robin Chittenden

© Robin Chittenden