Nests on ground away from, but not distant from water in open tundra (Palmer 1976); often in graminoid meadows within a few miles of the coast. Distance from coast varies; generally nests further inland than Common and Spectacled Eider (Palmer 1976). Moves to fresh or salt water habitats to rear broods, feeding in shallow ponds with sedges along the way and eventually ending up in salt water where fledging occurs (Suydam 2000).
Palmer, R. S., editor. 1976. Handbook of North American birds. Vol. 2. Waterfowl (first part). Whistling ducks, swans, geese, sheld-ducks, dabbling ducks. Yale Univ. Press, New Haven. 521 pp.
Suydam, R. S. 2000. King Eider (Somateria spectabilis). In The Birds of North America, No. 491 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA. 83