About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Bird of the week: Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren Thryothorus ludovicianus
Order: PASSERIFORMES Family: Wrens (Troglodytidae)

Description
The size of a small sparrow, the Carolina Wren is a relatively large member of the wren family. Male and females look alike, but males are slightly heavier and have longer bills, wings, and tails. The back is dark rusty brown, but the rump is bright rust. The throat and chin are white, and there is a prominent white eye stripe.

Behavior
The Carolina wren is a very energetic bird with fast movements. They like to chatter constantly while jerking their upturned tail as if excited. This endless chattering is interspersed with sudden bouts of singing. A single male Carolina Wren can sing up to forty different songs, up to 3,000 times a day. You may actually hear Wrens before you seem them.

Carolina Wrens are ground foragers, hopping and flitting on the ground turning over leaf litter and investigating upturned tree roots to find a variety of food items. The diet mainly consists of insects, including beetles, caterpillars, moths, crickets, bees, and ants.

General
Don't be surprised if you find that a wren has built a nest in your hanging plant this April. You can still care for your plant. Just be sure that you water around the nest and don't leave water standing in the pot. The wren may scold you as you come near her nest, but she will return. Females are tight sitters, not readily flushing from the nest. The incubation period lasts 12 to 14 days. During this time, the male often brings food to the nest for the female.

2 comments:

kathy jane said...

We love to watch their industrious little ways down here in southeast GA. They are our loudest little neighbors with the most beautiful songs. If you didn't know better you'd be so surprised to find that such a little guy could be so loud!

kathy jane said...
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