House Wren Troglodytes aedon Never shy_ House Wrens often scold by fdh56iuoui


									                                                        SPECIES PROFILE
                                                                    gleaned from the sub-canopy to the ground.4,11

                                                                    BREEDING. House Wren males are mostly monogamous
                                                                    but will advertise for a second mate. Approximately 10% of
                                                                    the breeding males in a Wyoming study acquired a second
                                                                    mate.8 Females also mostly monogamous but in an Illinois
                                                                    population, 25 of 96 broods had young not fathered by the
                                                                    male of the pair as determined using DNA analysis.14 Fe-
                                                                    male selects the male based on the quality of the nest sites
                                                                    that he has established and females have a preference for
                                                                    males with more than one nest site.6 Males defend territories
                                                                    from other males but females only evict intruders from the
                                                                    immediate area of the nest.10

                                                                    NESTING. House Wrens are secondary cavity nesting
                                                                    birds. Males locate several cavities and place a few to hun-
                                                                    dreds of small twigs in the cavity. Once the pair is formed
                                                                    the female selects a brood site from the male’s claimed nest
                                                                    sites and lines the cup with grass, inner bark, hair, and feath-
                        House Wren                                  ers.6 Only female incubates and broods the very young
                      Troglodytes aedon                             hatchlings. Male rarely feeds the female on the nest.9 Both
                                                                    parents feed the young birds. Number of eggs averages ap-
    Never shy, House Wrens often scold you when you walk            proximately 6 eggs. One or two broods per season with two
by the overgrown back fence where the box elders and grape          or more common in the south.6
vines grow. Or perhaps you watch from your kitchen win-
dow with your morning cup of coffee as your wrens fill up           STATUS. Populations in Minnesota remained relatively
your three bluebird nest boxes with twigs. You may have             stable from 1966 to 1996 but at a larger scale, populations in
bought and placed those boxes but the wrens own them and            the east, central, and western U.S. and Canada significantly
they are not afraid to let you know it.                             increased during the same time period.13 We observed this
                                                                    species with at least some breeding evidence at 70% (49) of
APPEARANCE. House Wren has a head, nape, and back                   sample units and this included 9% (6) Possible, 37% (26)
of brownish-gray with a faint eyebrow. Throat and chest are         Probable, and 24% (17) Confirmed records.
light gray. Wings, tail, and sides have some dark brown bar-
ring. The overall length is approximately 4.7-inches.6 Both         CONSERVATION. House Wrens prosper at areas with
sexes sing but the males are most vocal and their song is a         trees and also dead, standing trees. They readily use nest
complex series of very rapid, exuberant chattering of whis-         boxes when the are placed within several dozen feet of trees.
                                                                    ____________________                                                                   MBW
tled notes that are hard to describe but quite distinctive at the
same time.6,12 Males advertise by song from the highest             1
                                                                      Bock, C.E., and J.F. Lynch. 1970. Breeding bird populations of burned and unburned conifer forest
                                                                             in the Sierra Nevada. Condor 72: 182–189.
available song perch sometimes greater than 75 feet from            2
                                                                      Chadwick, N.L., D.R. Progulske, and J.T. Finn. 1986. Effects of fuelwood cutting on birds in
                                                                             southern New England. J. Wildl. Manage. 50: 398–405.
ground. Paired males generally sing from less than six feet         3
                                                                      Drilling, N.E., and C.F. Thompson. 1984. The use of nest boxes to assess the effect of selective
from the brood nest.6 Female’s song similar to males but                     logging on House Wren populations. Pp. 188–196 in Proceedings of the workshop on manage-
                                                                             ment of nongame species and ecological communities (W. C. McComb, ed.). Lexington, KY.
usually shorter.7                                                   4
                                                                      Guinan, D.M., and S.G. Sealy. 1989. Foraging-substrate use by House Wrens nesting in natural
                                                                             cavities in a riparian habitat. Can. J. Zool. 67: 61–67.
                                                                      Hejl, S.J., R.L. Hutto, C.R. Preston, D.M. Finch. 1995. Effects of silvicultural treatments
DISTRIBUTION. The House Wren breeds throughout                               in the Rocky Mountains. Pp. 220–444 in Ecology and management of neotropical migratory
                                                                             birds (T. E. Martin and D. M. Finch, eds.). Oxford Univ. Press, New York.
Minnesota and most of North America except for a swath              6
                                                                      Johnson, S.L. 1998. House Wren (Troglodytes aedon). In The Birds of North America, No.
                                                                              380 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.
from Texas to Florida and part of southern South Carolina.          7
                                                                      Johnson, L.S., and L.H. Kermott. 1990. Structure and context of female song in a north-temperate
Wintering area occurs along the southern east and west              8
                                                                              population of House Wrens. J. Field Ornithol. 61: 273–284.
                                                                      Johnson, L.S., L.H. Kermott. 1991. Effect of nest-site supplementation on polygynous
coasts and across the southern U.S. and into Mexico.6,12                     behavior in the House Wren (Troglodytes aedon). Condor 93: 784–787.
                                                                      Johnson, L.S., L.H. Kermott. 1992. Why do male House Wrens feed their incubating mates so
                                                                             rarely? Am. Midl. Nat. 127: 200–203.
MIGRATION. The date of first arrival based on 37 years of           10
                                                                       Johnson, L.S., W.A. Searcy. 1996. Female attraction to male song in House Wrens
                                                                             (Troglodytes aedon). Behaviour 133: 357–366.
observation in the Moorhead area was May 3, and the last            11
                                                                       Mirsky, E.N. 1976. Ecology of coexistence in a wren-wrentit-warbler guild. Ph.D. diss., Univ.
                                                                             of California, Los Angeles.
day observed in the fall was Oct 4. In general, the bird ar-        12
                                                                       National Geographic Society. 2001. Field guide to the birds of North America. Third edition.
rives in mid-May and leaves in late-September in our area.6         13
                                                                             National Geographic, Washington, D.C.
                                                                       Sauer, J.R., J.E. Hines, G. Gough, I. Thomas, and P.G. Peterjohn. 1997. The North American
                                                                             breeding bird survey results and analysis, 1966-1996. Version 96.4, Patuxent Wildl. Res.
                                                                             Center, Laurel, MD
HABITAT. House Wrens occur along the edge of decidu-                14
                                                                       Soukup, S.S., and C.F. Thompson. 1997. Social mating system affects the frequency of extra-pair
ous forests or within open forest habitats.6 They are gener-                 paternity in House Wrens. Anim. Behav. 54: 1089–1105.

ally not found in larger forests unless some type of distur-
bance has created openings.1,2,3,5

FOOD HABITS.           House Wrens consume invertebrates
                               House Wren (Troglodytes aedon)
      17A1          17A2           17B1           17B2           16A1          16A2           16B1           16B2          15A1         15A2       15B1   15B2    14A1     14A2

      17A3          17A4           17B3           17B4           16A3          16A4           16B3           16B4          15A3         15A4       15B3   15B4    14A3     14A4

      17C1          17C2           17D1           17D2           16C1          16C2           16D1           16D2          15C1         15C2       15D1   15D2    14C1     14C2

      17C3          17C4           17D3           17D4           16C3          16C4           16D3           16D4          15C3         15C4       15D3   15D4    14C3     14C4

      20A1         20A2            20B1           20B2           21A1          21A2           21B1           21B2          22A1         22A2       22B1   22B2    23A1     23A2
           Year Round
      20A3 Wintering               20B3           20B4           21A3          21A4           21B3           21B4          22A3         22A4       22B3   22B4    23A3     23A4

      20C1          20C2           20D1           20D2           21C1          21C2           21D1           21D2          22C1         22C2       22D1   22D2    23C1     23C2

      20C3          20C4           20D3           20D4           21C3          21C4           21D3           21D4          22C3         22C4       22D3   22D4    23C3     23C4

      29A1          29A2           29B1           29B2           28A1          28A2           28B1           28B2          27A1         27A2       27B1   27B2    26A1     26A2

      29A3          29A4           29B3           29B4           28A3          28A4           28B3           28B4          27A3         27A4       27B3   27B4    26A3     26A4

      29C1          29C2           29D1           29D2           28C1          28C2           28D1           28D2          27C1         27C2       27D1   27D2    26C1     26C2

      29C3          29C4           29D3           29D4           28C3          28C4           28D3           28D4          27C3         27C4       27D3   27D4    26C3     26C4

      32A1          32A2           32B1           32B2           33A1          33A2           33B1           33B2          34A1         34A2       34B1   34B2    35A1     35A2

      32A3          32A4           32B3           32B4           33A3          33A4           33B3           33B4          34A3         34A4       34B3   34B4    35A3     35A4

      32C1          32C2           32D1           32D2           33C1          33C2           33D1           33D2          34C1         34C2       34D1   SMSC Property Boundary
                                                                                                                                                           34D2  35C1    35C2

                                                                                                                                                   Breeding Status
      32C3          32C4           32D3           32D4           33C3          33C4           33D3           33D4          34C3         34C4       34D3   Not surveyed
                                                                                                                                                          34D4    35C3     35C4

                                                                                                                                                          Not observed

   Observed as non-breeding - Species observed but not believed to be breeding in the survey block.
   Possibly breeding - Male (singing or not) or female observed in suitable nesting habitat during its breeding season.                                   Observed as non-breeding
   Probably breeding - 3 or more territorial males; a pair observed in suitable nesting habitat during the species breeding season;
                       territorial behavior in the same location over a span of a week; courtship; copulation; visiting probable nest
                       site; agitated behavior; nest building by wrens or woodpeckers.
                                                                                                                                                          Possibly breeding (6)
   Confirmed breeding - Nest material carried by birds other than wrens or woodpeckers; nest building by birds other than wrens
                        or woodpeckers; distraction display; used nest; recently fledged young; occupied nest; fecal sac trans-                           Probably breeding (26)
                        portation; nest with eggs; nest with young.
                                                                       0            0.25           0.5                            1                       Confirmed breeding (17)
Source: SMSC Faunal Atlas, NatureServ Explorer                                                                                     Miles

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