Resources related to Distribution

Effects of temperature and mussel size on intertidal mussel bed infaunal communities: implications for climate change and biodiversity.

While mussel beds can withstand the changing tides, global climate change may cause damage to these diverse ecosystems. As the amount of carbon dioxide in the air increases, so does the amount of carbon dioxide dissolved in seawater. The resulting acidification changes the basic chemistry of the oceans and decreases the growth rate of organisms which rely on dissolved calcium carbonate to build their shells.

Relative roles of eelgrass vs. hard-mixed substrates as habitatfor scoters (Melanitta spp.) in Puget Sound

Scoters ( Melanitta spp. ) are sea ducks that breed in freshwater wetlands of Canada and Alaska and winter in estuaries and bays on the Pacific and Atlantic coasts (Fig. 1). As with most sea ducks, scoter populations have declined in many parts of their Pacific Coast ranges. Three species of scoter can be found in wintering in Puget Sound, the common scoter ( Melanitta nigra ), the white-winged scoter ( Melanitta deglandi ) and the surf scoter ( Melanitta perspicillata ). The combined population of all three scoters declined by 57% between 1978-79 and 1992-99.

Trends in Duck Breeding Populations 1955–2012

This report summarizes information about the status of duck populations and wetland habitats during spring 2012, focusing on areas encompassed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife (USFWS) and Canadian Wildlife Services’ (CWS) Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey. We do not include information from surveys conducted by state or provincial agencies. In the traditional survey area, which includes strata 1–18, 20–50, and 75–77 (Figure 1), the total duck population estimate (excluding scoters [Melanitta spp.], eiders [Somateria spp.

SDJV Implementation Plan 2011-2014

At the inception of the SDJV, the lack of understanding about population delineation was seen as one of the highest priority topics for future work; this priority was confirmed during a 2010 review of program direction. Identifying links among breeding, molting, staging, and wintering areas will help improve the design of monitoring surveys and interpretation of trends, and more effectively direct management actions.

Distribution patterns of wintering sea ducks in relation to the North Atlantic Oscillation and local environmental characteristics

Twelve species of North American sea ducks (Tribe Mergini) winter off the eastern coast of the United States and Canada. Yet, despite their seasonal proximity to urbanized areas in this region, there is limited information on patterns of wintering sea duck habitat use. It is difficult to gather information on sea ducks because of the relative inaccessibility of their offshore locations, their high degree of mobility, and their aggregated distributions.

Sea Duck Joint Venture Strategic Plan 2008-2012

The fifteen species of sea ducks (Tribe Mergini) are the most poorly understood group of waterfowl in North America. The most basic biological information is unknown for some species. Few species have reliable population indices or estimates of annual productivity, and much of our knowledge is based on a very few, localized studies. Also, current survey design is unable to accurately estimate sea duck harvest.

Recommendations for Establishing Population Objectives for Sea Ducks

No population objectives are listed for any sea duck population in the most recent (2004) update
or earlier versions of the Plan. The primary reason for lack of sea duck objectives is a lack of
reliable abundance estimates, confounded by inadequate knowledge of sea duck distribution for
some species.
Following a 2008 SDJV progress report to the NAWMP Plan Committee, the PC acknowledged
the need to establish population objectives for sea ducks and stated that this need should be

Investigating the wintering ecology of surf scoters and long-tailed ducks

North American populations of breeding surf scoters and long-tailed ducks appear to be decreasing. Along the Atlantic coast, wintering populations of surf scoters are suspected to be decreasing, while the status of wintering populations of long-tailed ducks remains unknown. These trends have led conservation organizations to assign a "high" relative conservation priority to both species.