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Rock Wren

Silhouette WrensWrens
Rock WrenSalpinctes obsoletus
  • ORDER: Passeriformes
  • FAMILY: Troglodytidae

Basic Description

The small, industrious Rock Wren blends right into its pale grayish brown landscapes of western North America. Rock Wrens constantly hop around rocks, investigating crannies for insects and spiders, which they extract with their delicate bills. This resourceful species thrives even in bleak desert settings occupied by few other birds. Listen for their loud, burry, songs and calls with repeated phrases. Northern and higher-elevation populations move southward, or downslope, for winter.

More ID Info
image of range map for Rock Wren
Year-roundBreedingMigrationNonbreeding
Range map provided by Birds of the World
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Find This Bird

A morning hike into a dry, rocky environment in the West should turn up a pair of Rock Wrens during nesting season, when males sing and keep a lookout from prominent stony perches. They adapt well to altered landscapes—almost any sparsely vegetated slope with plenty of crevices and some shade could provide habitat for a pair of Rock Wrens. In Mexico and Central America, they use restored Mayan and Aztec ruins as habitat in dry landscapes.

Other Names

  • Cucarachero Roquero (Spanish)
  • Troglodyte des rochers (French)
  • Cool Facts

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