- 16.9–18.9 in
- 16.9–46.6 oz
- Garrot d'Islande (French)
- The Barrow's Goldeneye is rather long-lived for a duck, with one individual reaching 18 years of age. Most females do not breed until they are three years old.
- Like the Common Goldeneye, the Barrow's Goldeneye is not too particular about holding on to its own offspring. A female may lay eggs in the nest of another goldeneye or other species of cavity-nesting duck. Once the ducklings come out of the nest, the broods of different females often come together and are taken care of by a single female. The young ducklings are highly independent, feeding on their own, and require little parental care.
- For a species with such widely separated populations, it is perhaps surprising that the Barrow's Goldeneye shows little variation from place to place. Those breeding in North America are essentially identical on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. Female Barrow's Goldeneyes breeding in Iceland do not get as extensively yellow bills as the North American birds, but have only a yellow or orangish band on the outer third of the otherwise dusky bill.
- The oldest Barrow Goldeneye recorded was a male who was at least 15 years, 4 months old.
Breeds along lakes in parkland, especially alkaline lakes. Winters along rocky coasts.
Aquatic invertebrates and fish eggs, occasionally small fish and vegetation.
- Clutch Size
- 1–28 eggs
- Egg Description
- Glossy greenish.
- Condition at Hatching
- Covered with down, eyes open. Leave nest within two days after hatching.
Nest in tree cavity or nest box, lined with downy feathers from chest of female.
Dives underwater to capture prey on bottom. Flocks often dive together.
Barrow's Goldeneye populations appear stable, but have may have experienced a small decline between 1966 and 2014, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. They are not on the 2014 State of the Birds Watch List.
- Eadie, J. M., J.-P. L. Savard, and M. L. Mallory. 2000. Barrow's Goldeneye (Bucephala islandica). In The Birds of North America, No. 548 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.
- North American Bird Conservation Initiative, U.S. Committee. 2014. State of the Birds 2014 Report. U.S. Department of Interior, Washington, DC.
- USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. 2015. Longevity records of North American Birds.
- USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. 2014. North American Breeding Bird Survey 1966–2014 Analysis.