Image of sample bird and animal t-shirts for sale

House Wren

Order: Passeriformes
Family: Troglodytidae
Genus: Troglodytes
Species: aedon

La. passer sparrow, small bird
La. forma form, kind, species
Gr. trogle hole or hollow
Gr. dutes burrower
Gr. troglodutes cave dweller
Gr. aedon songstress,


House Wren, F.C.Hennessey, Birds of Eastern Canada, P.A.Taverner, 1922
F.C Hennessey
Four to five inches. Brownish cinnamon gray with lighter gray underside. Barred wings and tail with light fringes. Slightly downward curved beak. Often upturned perky tail, especially when excited.

Lives in woodland edges, groves and very often in or near buildings in farms, towns and suburbs from northern British Columbia and Alberta to southern Quebec and throughout most of continental US. Migrates to the southern United States and Mexico for the winter.


     USGS House Wren Map

USGS Map, Patuxent Wildlife Research Center,

Male builds several nests almost anywhere out of almost anything to entice a mate who replaces one nest with her own, usually of fine twigs and lined with dried grasses or other soft material. Nests have been found in tree cavities, barns, martin houses, tin cans, jars, planters, hanging clothes, paper bags, hats, shoes, pipes, cars and even old cow, horse, and oxen skulls. If the cavity they choose is large, they will fill it full. They like bird houses and various building nooks and crannies. They will return to selected nesting sites year after year.

Lays around five to eight, more or less, usually seven, speckled, oblong to nearly spherical eggs which hatch after about two weeks incubation and young leave the nest in about another two weeks.

Eats insects and spiders it finds in trees, shrubs, brush piles and on the ground.

Bubbly singer, yet really irritable. Will not share its territory with others of its kind and boldly challenges intruders near its nest. When scolding strangers its beak is wide open, its tongue vibrating, and body trembling with the violence of its effort.

House Wren, Louis Agassiz Fuertes, The Book of Birds, Common Birds of Town and Country, Henry W. Henshaw, 1921

Louis Agasiz Fuertes

Wrens are one of the easiest birds to attract to nest boxs in cities (probably next to Robins.) A favorable environment always helps increase chances. Plant trees, shrubs and gardens for cover.

The House Wren Birdhouse (same as for Bewicks Wrens and Winter Wrens) has a 4" by 4" floor, 8" inside ceiling, 1 1/4" diameter entrance hole located 6" above the floor and ventilation openings.

Assemble with corrosion resistant screws fit to pre-drilled countersunk pilot holes. Hinged roof is secured with shutter hooks for easy access.

Suspend hanging wren houses with a few inches of wire so that they swing from tree branches or under eaves or mount nest boxes on trees, fences or walls between four and ten feet high with partial sun and shade. Remove the nests after the brood rearing seasons are over.

Nestbox for House Wrens, Bewick's Wrens, Winter Wrens, and Brown Creepers
Wren Nest Box Plans


Male Wrens will build several nests for the female to choose from so hanging several nest boxes may make an area more attractive.
Chickadees, titmice, nuthatches, downy woodpeckers and other wrens may use these nest boxes. These species may nest in boxes with slightly larger entrance holes.

House Wen Songs, F. Schuyler Mathews


  50birds Home                                       Privacy Policy