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, March 15, 2015

House Wren vs. Carolina Wren

I had a wren at my suet feeder but I’m not sure if it was a House Wren or Carolina Wren.

In mid-Michigan it is much more common to see a Carolina Wren during the winter than a House Wren. Most House Wrens in North America migrate to the southern U.S. and Mexico for winter. You can listen for their bubbly song as they arrive in their Michigan nesting territories from late April to October. Unfortunately another sign that they have arrived is a destroyed nest. Sometimes they’ll pull out other birds’ nests or poke holes in their eggs to keep the competition down in their chosen territory.

Both birds have long curved bills and upward-cocked tails. The House Wren is a smaller bird about 4 ½ in long. They are plain brown with darker barring on the wings and tail. The Carolina Wren is about 5 ½ in long. They have unpatterned reddish-brown feathers above and warm buffy-orange feathers below, and a long white eyebrow stripe.
Comparison of similar birds from: http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/House_Wren/id
Both wrens are primarily insect eaters, but they will also eat some fruits and seeds. Suet and Nuts will attract them to feeders when insects are scarce. It is also good to have a brush pile close to your feeding area to make them feel more secure with an easy place to seek refuge.

Related Articles:
- Do the same House Wrens nest in the same house every year? http://bit.ly/uDBbIb
- Quick Fun Facts on Wrens http://bit.ly/v5XVoU
- Hanging & Placement of Wren Bird Houses http://bit.ly/rBLsGQ
- The best suet for wild birds http://goo.gl/yY7bGt
- Roosting Pockets: Warm Shelter from Frosty Winds http://goo.gl/QOPbMw

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