: Non-breeding. and Jun-Aug in nearshore salt water; most if not all sub-adults. In years, a small group has summered between Seawall and Ship Harbor
: to early Apr-late May with a late Apr-early May peak and to early Jun, and again early/mid Oct-early Nov, when occasionally . In Apr-late May the area between Ship Harbor and Seawall has harbored flocks of 500-700 birds.
: and Dec-Mar. Small numbers especially on the east side of MDI
Miscellany: Active migration is typically undetectable except from Schoodic Point and the outer islands but Black Scoters, like most birds, are energy conservers. Although their fall migration is mostly offshore, when faced with strong head winds with a southwesterly component, they swing in close to the eastern ‘lee' side of MDI where they can be seen well from places like Otter Point.
In spring, male Black Scoters give a wonderful low mournful whistle, a siren-song for birders. Listen here.
Last Updated: June 1st, 2022