HOUSE WREN

HOUSE WREN(Troglodytes aedon) – (See images below)
DESCRIPTION: The House Wren adult has brown top parts and grey under parts. Wings and tail are finely barred. Tail is often erect, even bent over bird’s back at times. Eyes are dark brown, bill is yellowish, legs and feet are pinkish grey. Sexes are similar. Bird length is around 13 cm (5 inches). There are several subspecies.
VOICE: https://www.xeno-canto.org/species/Troglodytes-aedon
NAME: ‘Wren’ derives from Old English. ‘House’ stems from the bird’s habit of being around dwellings. Latin genus name ‘Troglodytes’ means ‘cave dweller’, due to bird’s habit of disappearing into holes or crevices while pursuing prey, also related to nest location. Latin species name ‘aedon’ derives from Greek mythology and means a ‘songstress’ (in reference to the bird’s songs).
HABITAT: Wooded areas around the plains, around inhabited areas.
DIET: Mostly insects.
NESTING: Nest is built in a cavity (woodpecker hole, on cliffs, bird houses, a gourd or other hollow objects) usually not far from the ground. Aggressively protective of their nesting territory, known to pierce eggs (ovicide) in other birds’ nests nearby, including their own species. Three to seven creamy eggs are laid, incubated by female. Young fed by both parents.
DISTRIBUTION: Breeds in southern and west half of Canada (except the Rockies), and northern half of the USA. Winters in southeast USA and Mexico. Year-round resident in Central America and South America.
Distribution Map: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_wren – /media/File:Troglodytes_aedon_map.svg
ON PEI: Does not breed on Prince Edward Island, sightings listed as ‘accidental’ so far. See note below on bird vagrancy.
CONSERVATION: Population large and widespread, currently not at risk.
Vagrancy: In biology this means an animal going way outside its normal range. For birds, this can happen when there are storms and they get blown off course. On other times, the bird simply wanders in a different direction than usual. Here’s an article about vagrancy in birds.
SIMILAR SPECIES: Winter Wren, Carolina Wren, Marsh Wren
REFERENCES: https://www.borealbirds.org/bird/house-wren
https://www.mba-aom.ca/jsp/toc.jsp (Maritimes Breeding Bird Atlas)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_wren
http://identify.whatbird.com/obj/814/overview/House_Wren.aspx
https://nature.mdc.mo.gov/discover-nature/field-guide/house-wren (Missouri Department of Conservation)
https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/house-wren
http://fieldguide.mt.gov/speciesDetail.aspx?elcode=ABPBG09010 (Montana Field Guide)
https://animaldiversity.org/accounts/Troglodytes_aedon/ (University of Michigan)
https://txtbba.tamu.edu/species-accounts/house-wren/ (Texas Breeding Bird Atlas)
https://birdatlas.mb.ca/accounts/speciesaccount.jsp?sp=HOWR&lang=en (Manitoba Breeding Bird Atlas)

House Wren - Bandelier National Monument, NM - July 2007 - photo by S. King, USNPS
House Wren – Bandelier National Monument, NM – July 2007 – photo by S. King, USNPS
House Wren - Sao Paulo Botanical Garden, Brazil - Sept. 2007 - photo by Dario Sanches
House Wren – Sao Paulo Botanical Garden, Brazil – Sept. 2007 – photo by Dario Sanches
House Wrens using gourd nest - June 2014 - photo by VasenkaPhotography
House Wrens using gourd nest – June 2014 – photo by VasenkaPhotography

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