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Pacific Wren

Troglodytes pacificus ORDER: PASSERIFORMES FAMILY: TROGLODYTIDAE

IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern

Pacific Wrens are tiny brown wrens with a song much larger than themselves. One researcher deemed them a “pinnacle of song complexity.” This tinkling, bubbly songster is more often heard than seen within the dark understory of old-growth evergreen forests where they live. When Pacific Wrens sing they hold their tail upright and their entire body shakes with sound. In the dark understory, they move like mice through the forest, hopping along logs and upturned roots.

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Backyard Tips

If you live within their breeding range, you may be able to attract one to your yard by installing a nest box. Be sure to have the nest box ready before the breeding season begins complete with a predator guard. Find plans to build your own nest box at NestWatch.

Landscaping with native plants can also attract Pacific Wrens. Maintaining areas with dense vegetation and brush piles can provide foraging and maybe even nesting opportunities. Learn more about landscaping with native plants at Habitat Network.

Find This Bird

Pacific Wrens are very vocal so listen for their rapid series of tumbling and trilling notes in old-growth forests in the West. When you hear their sweet song, patiently look in the understory for mouselike movements along decaying logs and in upturned roots. Early mornings during the breeding season are best times to find them perched in the open shaking as they sing.

Get Involved

Count the number of Pacific Wrens you see in your yard during the Great Backyard Bird Count.

Look for Pacific Wren nests and contribute valuable data about them through NestWatch and eBird.

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The Winter Wren’s Wraparound Range Map. Story in Living Bird, Summer 2009.

eBird Occurrence Maps Pacific/Winter Wren

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bird image Blue-winged Warbler by Brian Sullivan

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