Nebraska Ornithologists' Union


Date of this Version


Document Type



Nebraska Bird Review (September 1992) 60(3).


Copyright 1992, Nebraska Ornithologists' Union. Used by permission.


An "Iowa" record of Common Eider to date has apparently not been considered as a Nebraska record (Johnsgard 1980, Bray et al. 1986). A note was published by Philip Dumont in 1934 (Wilson Bulletin 46: 203), describing a bird that was shot by a hunter on the Missouri River below Sioux City, Iowa on November 1, 1901--Dumont cited measurements that established the specimen as an example of Somateria mollissima v. nigra, the western race of Common Eider. Dumont wrote that "this record might be claimed as Nebraskan as well as Iowan", a statement noted by Tate (1969) on the only other record of Common Eider for Nebraska (Bray et al. 1986).

From the information available, there is no evidence as to which state the Sioux City Common Eider was in when it was collected. It seems to have been claimed as an Iowa record because Dumont was an Iowan, and the specimen was recovered from a Sioux City market, rather than because of any data ascertaining the provenance of the specimen. It is well-known that the Iowa-Nebraska boundary is tortuous, and in many places unrelated to the current channel of the Missouri River.