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This striking diving duck is commonly found throughout North America, in northern Russia and Scandinavia. Easily identifiable with a greenish-black head and white spot on the cheek, adult Common Goldeneye males have stunning yellow eyes from which they derive their name. Females have a brown head but the same golden eyes. Goldeneye chicks have greyish-brown eyes when they are born, go through a purple and blue phase, and then their eyes reach this beautiful golden color at full maturity.
Look for them breeding in the taiga in summer in Canada, and throughout the lower 48 states on open water in winter. They are cavity nesters and will nest in trees as well as nest boxes. After a few days in the nest cavity, the chicks are led to the water by their mother where they often join creches of other Goldeneye chicks.