Harlequin Duck

Histrionicus histrionicus

This may be the most consistently common species in close proximity to each of the Pribilof Islands as large numbers winter locally as well as over- summer, though no nesting activity has ever been documented. It is perhaps the least defined non-resident species from a temporal basis as the numbers seem to ebb-and-flow during the year and an actual seasonal pattern is rarely-to-never seen. Almost always abundant, this species can be easily found along the shorelines of all of the Pribilofs Islands year-round except during short winter periods when no ice-free water exists. The largest numbers are likely present during early spring and late fall.

Most individuals that over-summer in the Pribilofs are males, though it may be hard to tell much of the time as they are in their eclipse-plumage, which looks very similar to the species female plumage.

Photo by Nigel Voaden
Harlequin Ducks (front) with Long-tailed Duck by Cory Gregory
Harlequin Ducks (with Long-tailed Ducks) by Sam Woods