Black Scoter

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Black Scoter: for more photos, see Sitka Nature Photo Gallery for Melanitta americana
Locale   Sp     Su     F     W     Br  
SE Alaska (edit) U R U U -
Yakutat (edit) FC U FC C -
Skagway (edit) + + - - -
Haines (edit) R R R R -
Glacier Bay (edit) U R U FC -
Juneau (edit) O R O U -
Sitka (edit) U VR U R -
Stikine (edit)
S Outer Islands (edit)
Ketchikan (edit) U VR U U -
Offshore (edit)
Black Scoter (Melanitta americana): Uncommon Fall, Winter, and Spring. Rare in Summer across most of the region, though Rare at best in upper Lynn Canal.

Found in nearshore salt water environments, in most locations in relatively small numbers (especially compared to other scoter species).

  • Consistently more abundant around Yakutat?
  • Difference between Haines and Skagway abundance reflect actual differences, or the way folks have described similar abundance at the two locations?
  • Possibly wintering in the region in areas not often visited? Apparently more abundant both to the south and west (per BoW) - curious about apparent scarcity in SEAK.

SEAK QBR Mentions

  • F2009: Flock of 400 near Pleasant Island, Icy Strait on 1 Sept. Most had departed the next day. Very large concentration for SEAK and unusually early. Typical arrival is early October.
  • W2009-2010: New local high count at GUS with 420 on 6 February. JNU had 45 on 8 Feb second largest local count by observer.
  • W2010-2011: New local high count at GUS with 478 on 17 December
  • W2013-2014: Est. 450 near GUS on 27 Feb. In recent years, GUS area has provided highest winter counts of this species.

Local Notes

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Other References

Related Files