Species Identification - Birds

Carolina Wren - Thryothorus ludovicianus or Sylvia ludoviciana

Family: Troglodytidae


One of the larger wrens, the Carolina Wren is deep rusty brown above and buff colored below, with a white throat and bar over the eye. They have a slightly hooked bill and a tail that points up most of the time. They prefer dense cover in forests, farms and, suburbs, and remain inconspicuous. Carolina Wrens are socially and genetically monogamous, raising multiple broods each year. Males are larger than females and only the males sing. When the male sings, which occurs year round, the tail is pointed down. They also have been shown to increase their song repertoire by learning new songs during the first three months of life. The songs of the Carolina Wrens as well as those of their enemies and “dear enemies” (non-threatening enemies) exist in complex linguistic patterns about territory and threats. They feed near the ground on beetles, grasshoppers, spiders, ants, bees, and wasps, as well as some vegetation.

Range: Carolina Wrens do not migrate, but their territories expand and contract based on the severity of the winter. They live as far west as Texas and northeast Mexico and as far north as Ontario, Canada.

Photos by Carl Berube

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