Friday, February 18, 2011

Camera Critters: Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus)



"The Carolina wren, Thryothorus ludovicianus, is mostly brown with a light yellowish-beige belly. It has large white stripe over each eye like an over-extended eyebrow and has a white throat. Its wings and tail are barred with black and it has thin white bars on its wings. Its legs are pink. Carolina wrens have long tails which they hold upright frequently especially when perched. The adult wren’s average length is 5 to 6 inches and it stands at approximately 4 inches in height. Carolina wrens of different sexes look similar with the males only slightly larger in size."  (Source:  Birdhouses 101)




Range:  Most of the eastern United States, north into southern Ontario and south into northern Mexico.  Carolina Wrens do not migrate.  They are sensitive to cold weather.  During warmer winters, individuals may shift their range northward, but then suffer high mortality during colder winters.  Some researchers speculate that the "normal" range for Carolina Wrens is gradually shifting north as a result of climate change.  Their range has expanded significantly since the early 1900s.  (Source:  Cornell Labs   Range map:  Cornell Labs)




Habitat:  "Found in a wide range of habitats, from swamps to forest to residential area. Requires moderately dense shrub or brushy cover."  (Source:  Cornell Labs)

Food:  In the wild, Carolina Wrens eat mostly insects and spiders.  They glean insects from the ground, tree trunks and tree branches by probing with their bills and turning over vegetation.  At bird feeders,  they will occasionally sample almost anything offered, but have a preference for suet.






Mating:  "A pair bond may form between a male and a female at any time of the year, and the pair will stay together for life. Members of a pair stay together on their territory year-round, and forage and move around the territory together."  (Source:  Cornell Labs)  Males present nesting sites to females, but the female makes the final choice.  "After the eggs are laid the male Carolina wren remains attentive to its mate and helps it by bringing food for the incubating female. After the eggs are hatched both birds help in the care of the young birds."  (Source:  Birdhouses 101

Nesting:  When it comes to to nest locations, Carolina Wrens may be the least picky of all birds.  Nesting will be the subject of a second blog post.



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17 comments:

NicoleB said...

This is such a pretty bird! Would love to see one one of these days! :)

TSannie said...

We've had wrens around all winter. I thought for sure they migrated.

Pat - Arkansas said...

A wealth of information about that sweet little bird. I see them only occasionally in my yard.

You must have stood on your head, almost, to get some of those photos; great angles.

KaHolly said...

That wren is certainly enjoying your offering. Thanks for the info. There are lots of Carolina Wrens here, but I know little about them. Looking forward to hearing about their nesting habits, so don't forget!! ~karen

Lisa at Greenbow said...

These are the toughest little birds ever. I love watching them zip around the garden. Great bio and photos.

Marvin said...

In truth taking these photos was not difficult. I was sitting at our kitchen table, more or less at the same height as the feeder hanging outside about two feet away. I did have to take A LOT of photos since the wrens tend not to stay still for very long. Most of my shots ended up being taken of flewjays.

Mike B. @ slugyard.com said...

Beautiful photos! We don't have those wrens here (I think) but similar little guys (and gals) are so hard to photograph. They're too quick- nicely done here.

Iowa Gardening Woman said...

We have had Carolina Wrens as far north as Iowa but I have not seen any at our feeders this winter, they have a beautiful song.

eileeninmd said...

I love these cute wrens. Great photos.

Kay L. Davies said...

What a totally cute bird. And what a totally unscientific way to refer to birds. O well, I'm an old lady now, and old ladies can get away with being featherbrained, right?
Good photos. Good work!
-- K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

EG Wow said...

The Carolina wren is such a sweet little thing!

ladyfi said...

Amazing shots. So adorable!

Gary said...

Beautiful shots and a great commentary Marvin. I don't think they come into my area tho' too cold for them. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Crafty Gardener said...

The little wrens are so cute. We have house wrens up here in the summer time.

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

Nice shots. I will have to keep my eyes open for them.

chubskulit said...

Oh so cute!

My critter post

Marie said...

Such lovely pictures -- the wren is so cute! I wish I could get such great photos of birds -- don't have quite the right camera equipment for it though. So I really enjoy the ones that are posted for the CC meme!

Marie
bonkersinbarnhart.com