White-winged Scoter

Melanitta fusca

Order

ANSERIFORMES

Family

Ducks, Geese and Swans (Anatidae)

Code 4

WWSC

Code 6

MELFUS

ITIS

ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The White-winged Scoter has an enormous range reaching up to generally 10 million square kilometers. This bird can be found across a huge amount of territory including Europe, Asia, and North America.There are also vagrant colonies in Africa, Greenland, Iceland, the Middle East and northernmost Asia as well. This bird prefers forests and grasslands, but also appears in wetland environments and coastal areas or waters including inland and coastal lakes. The global population of this bird is estimated to be between 2.6 and 3 million individual birds. It is not believed that the population trends for this species will soon approach the minimum levels that could suggest a potential decline in population. Due to this, population trends for the White-winged Scoter have a present evaluation level of Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

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PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

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BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

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SUMMARY

Overview

White-winged Scoter: Medium sea duck, mostly black except for white eye patches, large white wing patches. Bill is orange with large black basal knob. Red-orange legs, feet. Dives to 40 feet, feeds primarily on shellfish. Direct flight with steady wing beats. Flies in straight line or V formation.

 

Range and Habitat

White-winged Scoter: Breeds in Alaska and much of northern and central Canada. Spends winters along the coasts, from Alaska south to California and from Newfoundland south to the Carolinas, but rarely to Florida and Texas. Breeds on large lakes and winters mainly on the ocean and on large coastal bays.

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White-winged Scoter SONGS AND CALLS

White-winged Scoter A1

Calls from a small group as they interact and take flight.

Similar Sounding


Voice Text

No data available.

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The White-winged Scoter breeds farther inland than the other two scoter species and is the one most likely to appear inland on lakes and rivers during migration. It is the largest of the three scoters.
  • Small numbers winter on the eastern Great Lakes. Populations there had declined during the 1970s, but appear to be increasing in response to the invasion of the zebra mussel, a new and abundant food source.
  • They are among the last ducks to migrate to breeding grounds and may not begin nesting until mid-June. Females return to nest near the area where they hatched, occasionally using the nests of other birds.
  • A group of ducks has many collective nouns, including a "brace", "flush", "paddling", "raft", and "team" of ducks.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP NORTH AMERICA

About this North America Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across North America.

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Artist

Yury Lisyak

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

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BACKYARD BIRDING

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BIRDS AND BIRDING

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Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X