Prefers small islands, islets, and low-lying points of land. Sometimes nest on islands or islets in freshwater lakes, ponds, lagoons, near outlet to the sea (Nakashima 1986, Cornish and Dickson 1997). Vegetation at nest sites variable and can range from rocky substrate to coniferous forests (Goudie et al. 2000). Most productive nests occur in driftwood on high elevation islands in flood plumes of large rivers (Johnson 2000).
Cornish, B. J. and D. L. Dickson. 1997. Common Eiders nesting in the western Canadian Arctic. Pp. 40-50 in King and Common eiders of the western Canadian Arctic (D. L. Dickson, ed.). Can. Wildl. Serv. Occas. Pap. No. 94.
Goudie, R. I., G. J. Robertson, A. Reed. 2000. Common Eider (Somateria mollissima). In The Birds of North America, Vol. 7, No. 546 (A. Poole and F. Gill, Eds.). Philadelphia: The Academy of Natural Sciences; Washington, D.C.: The American Ornithologists’ Union.
Johnson, S. R. 2000. Pacific eider. In: Truett, J. C. and Johnson, S.R., eds. Natural history of an Arctic oil field: development and the biota. San Diego: Academic Press. 259-272.
Nakashima, D. J. 1986. Inuit knowledge of the ecology of the Common Eider in north Quebec. Pp. 102- 113 in Eider ducks in Canada (A. Reed, ed.) Can. Wildl. Serv. Rep. Ser. No. 47, Ottawa, ON.