The Atlantic Flyway Sea Duck Survey, conducted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, was established in 1991 to record sea duck numbers using near shore (within 700 m of shore) habitats from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia to Jacksonville, Florida. Existing breeding population surveys for North American waterfowl do not cover the core ranges of about half of North American sea duck species. Many species of North American sea ducks breed across vast Arctic regions that are difficult and costly to survey. Winter waterfowl surveys such as the Mid-winter Waterfowl Survey typically do not cover near shore or offshore coastal habitats used by sea ducks.