Scaup Aythya marila   [Linnaeus, 1761]

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Order: Anseriformes Family: Anatidae
BTO Codes: SP, SCAUP EURING No: 2040
Number in Britain: 5200 birds (Winter)
Conservation Status:
European: 3 Concern, most not in Europe; Endangered
Global: (Details)
Status in UK: (A)  Scarce Breeder, Passage/Winter Visitor
Subspecies: marila recorded in Britain (of 2 subsp. in the world)
Length: 46 cm Wingspan: 78 cm Weight: M/F: 1 kg    
Scientific name from: Gr.: aithuia=a seabird described by Aristotle and Gr.: marile=charcoal embers
World Distribution: BREEDS: n Eurasia, n North America, WINTERS: south to s Europe, e China & s US
Habitat: Tundra lakes, on migration open lakes & coasts
Diet: Omnivorous, but esp. molluscs in winter, mostly by diving
TitBit: More than 30,000 Scaup used to winter in the Firth of Forth, feeding on waste grain from the breweries and distilleries until tighter sewage regulations stopped the discharges.  
Identification Tips:
  Images from IBC or search flickr
  Videos from IBC
  Sound from xeno-canto
Crossley ID photos

Population and Distribution

Population Trend: No population trend available
Distribution: No distribution maps available
British Population Size:
    Winter: 5200 individuals in 2004/05 - 2008/09
    First Record: 1672
    First Breeding Record: Outer Hebrides 1897
    Conservation Status: RED because Recent Non-breeding Population Decline (1969-2007),
   Previous Assessments: 2002-2007 AMBER     1996-2001 AMBER  
   Races of Concern:
Habitat Occupancy (in the Breeding Season):
    No habitat data from BBS
Migration routes: Map of foreign ringing recoveries  and summary map from Time to Fly (in pop-up windows)
European Population Size:
    Summer: Unavailable
Population Assesment from Birds in Europe
Distribution in Europe mapped by the EBCC Atlas
Listed on the Appendices/Schedules of: WCA(I), WBD(II*,III*), Bern(III), Bonn(II), AEWA, NERC (41)
Survey Results:

Breeding and Survival

Egg Size: 62 x 43 mm Egg Weight: 67.0 g (of which 8 % is shell)
Number of Nest Records: 0
Clutch Size: 8 - 11 eggs
Incubation: 26- 28 days   by the: Female
Fledging: 40 - 45days as: Precocial, downy
First Clutches Laid: Unavailable
Number of Broods: 1
Number Ringed: Annual Totals
Adult Survival: 0.480       
Juvenile Survival: No data
Age at First Breeding: 2 years Typical Lifespan: 3 years
Maximum Recorded Age: 8 years 4 months 30 days (set in 1971)
Read a summary of Ringing Recoveries


Ring Size: G*
Wing Length Adult: Insufficient Data
Juvenile: Insufficient Data
Male: Insufficient Data
Female: Insufficient Data
Weight Adult: Insufficient Data
Juvenile: Insufficient Data
Male: Insufficient Data
Female: Insufficient Data

Other Names

Greater Scaup
Gaelic: Lach-mhara Welsh: Hwyaden Benddu
Danish: Bjergand Dutch: Toppereend
Finnish: Lapasotka French: Fuligule milouinan
German: Bergente Hungarian: Hegyi réce
Icelandic: Duggönd Irish: Lacha Iascán
Italian: Moretta grigia Norwegian: Bergand
Polish: Ogorzalka zwyczajna Portuguese: Zarro-bastardo
Spanish: Porrón bastardo Swedish: Bergand
Local Names: Mussel/Norwegian Duck

For More Information...

Books and Monographs:
   Kear, J 2005 Ducks, geese and swans Oxford University Press [598.48 KEA]
   Cabot, D. 2009 Wildfowl Collins, London
See Also:
Find scientific papers on Google Scholar or Scirus by clicking the icon
Wikipedia entry
HBW account (subscription required)
BirdLife species page
Recent sightings and information from BirdGuides
All About Birds (from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology)