Spectacled eider duck male in breeding plumage on water

Spectacled eider

Spectacled eiders are large sea ducks with a very noticeable difference. The colourful males are distinguished by black feathers surrounding white eye patches, looking much like a pair of spectacles! The females in comparison are much less showy.

Spectacled eiders arrive along the coast of Alaska and northeastern Siberia to breed during spring, making nests next to ponds out of the tundra's high grass. But little is still known about where spectacled eiders spend the winter, it is probably somewhere in the Bering Sea. They differ from other eider ducks in that their feathers extend down to the nostrils on the bill.

Scientific name: Somateria fischeri

Rank: Species

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The Spectacled eider can be found in a number of locations including: Arctic, Asia, North America, Russia. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.


The following habitats are found across the Spectacled eider distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web

Conservation Status

Least Concern

  1. EX - Extinct
  2. EW
  3. CR - Threatened
  4. EN - Threatened
  5. VU - Threatened
  6. NT
  7. LC - Least concern

Year assessed: 2009

Classified by: IUCN 3.1


  1. Life
  2. Animals
  3. Vertebrates
  4. Birds
  5. Anseriformes
  6. Ducks, geese and swans
  7. Somateria
  8. Spectacled eider

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