‘Ahhwoooh!’ The cooing of the male eider is one of Britain’s most wonderful wild sounds – uniquely soothing yet also comical. In The Nature of Spring, Scottish naturalist Jim Crumley describes it as an “extravagant woodwind yodel”. If you see a flotilla of these seaducks close inshore, you might also be treated to the drake’s display, in which he flicks his head back and points his bill to the sky, showing off his peachcoloured breast. By contrast, the brown female is as dowdy as can be, the better to hide her nest.
Listen to cooing eiders at xeno-canto.org