The Common Eider bird, scientifically known as Somateria mollissima, is a large sea duck found in the northern hemisphere. It is a popular bird in the bird-watching community because of its distinct features and behavior.
In terms of appearance, male eiders have black and white plumage on their back and a bright green patch on their neck. Female eiders have brown feathers with white underparts. Both male and female eiders have a distinctive wedge-shaped bill, with the male having a larger and more prominent bill.
Common Eiders are found in cold coastal waters of the North Atlantic and the Arctic Ocean. They are not migratory birds and spend most of their lives near nesting sites, feeding on a variety of mollusks, crustaceans, and other aquatic invertebrates. The birds are also known for their ability to dive underwater, where they can stay for several minutes at a time.
Like many bird species, the Common Eider relies on specific habitats for nesting. They nest in colonies on rocky islands, cliffs, and remote areas along the coast. Nesting sites are often selected for their proximity to food sources and protection from predators.
Common Eiders are social birds and often form large flocks during the winter months. During nesting season, males will defend territories around the nests and engage in elaborate courtship displays to impress the females.
Despite being a relatively common species, the Common Eider faces some conservation challenges. Habitat loss due to coastal development, ocean pollution, and hunting pressure are all threats to the bird's survival. However, the species is currently listed as of Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Overall, the Common Eider is a unique and fascinating bird that is appreciated for its beauty and importance in coastal ecosystems.