Pacific Wren – Call | Nest | Range | Size | Facts | Traits

Pacific Wren

The Pacific wren (Troglodytes pacificus) is a really small North American bird and a member of the primarily New World wren household Troglodytidae. It was as soon as lumped with Troglodytes hiemalis of eastern North America and Troglodytes troglodytes of Eurasia because of the winter wren. In this article, I am going to talk about Pacific Wren call, song, vs winter wren, nest, range, size, vs bewick’s wren, and winter wren.

Pacific Wren profile

It breeds alongside the Pacific coast from Alaska to California and inland so far as Wyoming and the Black Hills of South Dakota. It migrates by and winters throughout the western half of the United States and Canada.

Pacific Wren was previously thought-about a subspecies of Winter Wren (T. troglodytes), then break up in 2010 based mostly on voice, DNA, and refined variations in plumage (more deeply rufescent).

Pacific Wrens are distinguished from different sympatric wrens by often smaller size, a lot shorter tail, and pretty uniform brown coloration.

Their voice is more advanced and modulated, and delivered more quickly than by the Winter Wren, such that particular person notes are troublesome to comply with and respect. Winter Wren reported occasionally throughout migration in far eastern Montana.

The scientific name is taken from the Greek phrase “troglodytes” (from “trogle” a gap, and “dyein” to creep), which means “cave-dweller”, and refers to its behavior of disappearing into cavities or crevices while looking at arthropods or to roost.

Pacific Wren Description

Rufous brown above, richly colored below, barred with darker brown and dusky, even on wings and tail. The bill is darkish brown, the legs pale brown. Young birds are much less distinctly barred.

The Pacific Wren is a small dark wren (8-12 cm long, 8-12 g) with a brief stubby tail sometimes held in an upright and cocked place, and with a brief slender bill.

The coloration is pretty uniform darkish to medium brown, turning into paler on the supercilium, chin, and throat, and with darkish barring on the wings, tail, and underparts (belly, flanks, crissum); sexes are alike in look.

In 2010, the American Ornithologist’s Union breaks up the North American populations of Winter Wren into two separate species, the “Eastern Wren” of eastern North America and “Pacific Wren” of the West.

The Old World counterpart is now a separate species as effectively, referred to as “Eurasian Wren.” The Pacific Wren is a tiny woodland bird whose track is as elaborate as its plumage is drab.

This wren is darkish brown and mottled general, with a buff eye-line. It has a brief tail that it holds upright.

Pacific Wren Habitat

Pacific Wrens are discovered most frequently in closed-canopy conifer forests in any respect elevations, though in addition, they reside in different forest varieties as long as there’s dense understory.

Within these forests, brush piles, fallen logs, and stream banks are all good locations to seek out Pacific Wrens.

Pacific Wrens favor massive uncut stands of old-growth and mature coniferous forests and in addition, happen in riparian cottonwoods and aspens.

In Montana, they’re particularly frequent in cedar-hemlock, cedar-grand fir, and spruce-fir forests and are strongly related to riparian areas inside these forest varieties. Snags, massive bushes, and downed woody particles are vital parts of the breeding habitat.

The nesting substrate is very variable and consists of woodpecker cavities in bushes, holes in filth banks, niches in rotting bushes, root tangles of fallen bushes, clumps of hanging moss, and folds in tree bark.

Nesting and foraging sometimes happen inside 2 m (6.5 toes) of the bottom. In winter, Pacific Wrens use thickets in open forests and lower-elevation riparian areas along with massive tracts of mature forests.

Pacific Wren Behavior

Often seen creeping about among the many aforementioned buildings, Pacific Wrens glean prey from foliage, trunks, the bottom, and from the floor of the water.

In spring, males sing their prolonged advanced songs from mid-level and excessive perches, and in addition from low down, within the understory, on fallen logs, and many others.

Pacific Wren


Insects and spiders are the predominant prey of the Pacific Wren.

Pacific Wren Ecology

The Pacific wren nests largely in coniferous forests, particularly these of spruce and fir, the place it’s typically recognized by its long and exuberant track.

Although it’s an insectivore, it could actually stay in reasonably chilly and even snowy climates by foraging for bugs on substrates corresponding to bark and fallen logs.

Its actions because it creeps or climbs are incessant moderately than speedy; its quick flights swift and direct however not sustained, its tiny spherical wings whirring because it flies from bush to bush.

In the evening, often in winter, it typically roosts, true to its scientific name, in darkish retreats, comfortable holes, and even old nests. In a laborious climate, it might achieve this in events, both consisting of the household or of many people gathered collectively for heat.

For essentially the most half bugs and spiders are its meals, however in winter massive pupae are taken and a few seeds.

Pacific Wren Breeding

The male builds a small variety of nests. These are referred to as “cock nests” however are by no means lined till the feminine chooses one to make use of.

The regular spherical nest of grass, moss, lichens, or leaves is tucked right into a gap in a wall, tree trunk, crack in a rock or nook of a building, however, it’s typically inbuilt bushes, overhanging boughs, or the litter which accumulates in branches washed by floods.

Pacific Wren Nesting

Males set up and defend territories and appeal to females by singing. Males could nest with more than one feminine at a time. Nests are inbuilt natural cavities, often inside six toes of the bottom.

The cavities may be in upturned roots of downed bushes or rotten stumps, old woodpecker holes, rock crevices, beneath porches, or every other low cavity.

Male and feminine construct the nest collectively on a platform of twigs. The nest cup is fabricated from grass, weeds, moss, and rootlets, lined with hair and feathers.

The male could construct a number of dummy nests that stay unlined. The feminine incubates 5 to six eggs for 12 to 16 days. Both dad and mom feed the younger, which go away the nest at about 19 days.


Five to eight white or barely speckled eggs are laid in April, and second broods are reared.

Migration Status

On the coast and within the milder Washington lowlands, the Pacific Wren is a permanent resident. In colder elements of the state, they go away late within the fall for wintering grounds all through the western United States. They return early within the spring.

Conservation Status

The Pacific Wren is the one wren discovered within the Old World, the place it’s identified merely because the ‘Wren.’ Although Pacific Wrens are nonetheless common in Washington, Breeding Bird Survey knowledge present a big decline of 5.6% per year from 1982 to 1991.

Pacific Wren Idenfication

Pacific Wrens are very vocal so hear for his or her speedy sequence of tumbling and trilling notes in old-growth forests within the West.

When you hear their candy track, patiently look within the understory for mouselike actions alongside decaying logs and in upturned roots.

Early mornings in the course of the breeding season are the greatest occasions to seek out them perched within the open shaking as they sing.

Other Recommended Reading

Pacific Wren Facts

  1. Male Pacific Wrens construct a number of nests inside their territory. During courtship, males lead the feminine round to every nest and the feminine chooses which nest to make use of.
  2. Pacific Wrens could congregate close to streams when salmon are migrating within the Pacific Northwest to money in on the abundance of bugs that might be drawn to salmon carcasses.
  3. Some populations of Pacific Wrens transfer quick distances after the breeding season and others keep in identical place year-round.
  4. Pacific Wrens typically pile into nest bins to remain heat when the climate turns chilly. Thirty-one people had been discovered collectively in a single nest field in western Washington.
  5. Pacific Wren had been thought-about the identical species as Winter Wren till 2010 when researchers discovered that wrens within the West differed from birds within the East and from birds in Europe. Winter Wren was then break up into three completely different species; the
  6. Pacific Wren of the West, the Winter Wren of the East, and the Eurasian Wren in Europe—the one wren species that happens exterior the Americas.
  7. The oldest identified Pacific Wren was feminine and not less than 6 years, 6 months old when she was recaptured and rereleased throughout banding operations in California in 2008. She had been banded in an same state in 2003. Learn more about the pionus parrot.

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