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Winter Wren

ID Info
  • Winter Wren
  • Winter Wren
  • Winter Wren  video
Silhouette WrensWrens
Winter WrenTroglodytes hiemalis
  • ORDER: Passeriformes
  • FAMILY: Troglodytidae

Basic Description

In the tangled understory of eastern forests, a tiny ball of energy lets loose with a rich cascade of bubbly notes. This songster is none other than the Winter Wren, shaking as it sings its astoundingly loud song. It sports a palette of browns with dark barring on the wings, tail, and belly. It habitually holds its tiny tail straight up and bounces up and down. This rather weak flier hops and scampers among fallen logs mouselike, inspecting upturned roots and vegetation for insects.

More ID Info
image of range map for Winter Wren
Range map provided by Birds of the World
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Find This Bird

In summer, Winter Wrens are often commonly found in evergreen forests near streams with lots of fallen logs and dense understories. Listen for their loud and bubbly song, especially early in the morning during the breeding season (April–July) when you are most likely to find them perched on a stump or low branch in the understory shaking with their singing efforts. In winter they become much more widespread in the eastern United States and move from deep forest into more open or younger woods where they can be easier to find. Listen for their quieter barking call, similar to a Song Sparrow and watch for quick mouselike movements along fallen logs and upturned roots in the understory.

Other Names

  • Chochín Hiemal (Spanish)
  • Troglodyte des forêts (French)

Backyard Tips

Landscaping with native plants is a good way to provide habitat for Winter Wrens. Maintaining areas with dense vegetation and brush piles can provide foraging and maybe even nesting opportunities.

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