HUNTING TIPS & TACTICS
The Common Eider is actually the largest duck in the northern hemisphere. They are often found off of the northeast coast and along the southern coast of Alaska. They regularly feed on the sea bottom with a common diet of aquatic invertebrates such as mollusks, mussels and scallops along with other crustaceans.
The drakes are a very colorful and beautiful sea duck and the overall population of Common Eiders was actually hunted to the point of extinction on the Atlantic Coast back in the market hunting days of the early 1900’s.
Now days, with a healthy population of Common Eiders found on both coasts, they have become a very popular bird for hunting, for the avid sea duck hunter. Common methods of hunting this incredible duck are done from layout boats off the coasts, along the feeding grounds, as well as off of the rock ledges along the banks and islands of the north east coast.
Most hunters use long lines of 2 – 5 dozen decoys to lure the flocks of Common Eiders into gunning range. It is not uncommon to harvest several species of sea ducks when hunting the Common Eiders, including all three species of Scoters and Old Squaws. On the Pacific side, off the coast of Alaska, although populations are strong, finding huntable numbers of the Common Eider is the challenge as they are wide spread across the ocean.
The best time of day to hunt the Eiders is in the morning from sunrise to around 10:00am. Once the Eiders get settled into their feeding grounds they typically spend the day on the water.
The Common Eider has become a trophy for many waterfowl hunters these days and is more sought after for a trophy on the wall then for a delicious meal due to their diet of ocean creatures versus vegetati