Norwegian Polar Institute » Arter » Great northern diver

The great northern diver is a large, stoutly-built diver. It overlaps in size with the black-throated diver G. arctica. This species breeds in North America, Greenland, Iceland and Scotland. In Svalbard, the great northern diver breeds irregular on Bjørnøya.

Contents

Description

The great northern diver is a large, stoutly-built diver. It overlaps in size with the black-throated diver.

  • In other languages

    Gavia immer (Latin)
    Islom (Norwegian)
    Eistaucher (German)
    Plongeon imbrin (French)

Distribution

This species breeds in North America, Greenland, Iceland and Scotland. In Svalbard, the great northern diver breeds irregular on Bjørnøya. This is the easternmost breeding locality known in the world. It was last confirmed breeding in 2012, but pairs exhibiting breeding behaviour are observed annually.

Single birds and pairs are also seen annually along the west coast of Spitsbergen, and it is reasonable to believe that pairs attempt to breed on Spitsbergen from time to time.

General ecology

The European golden plover is a medium sized, short billed wader that breeds in the boreal and arctic zones from Iceland in the west through Great Britain and Scandinavia east to western Siberia.

In Svalbard, the European golden plover has been found breeding on Bjørnøya and western Spitsbergen. Single individuals and pairs are observed annually in these areas, and it is likely that the species probably breeds or attempts to breed annually in the region.

The European golden plover is a migratory species that winters along the west coast of Europe and North Africa.