Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus)

Carolina Wren

[order] PASSERIFORMES | [family] Troglodytidae | [latin] Thryothorus ludovicianus | [UK] Carolina Wren | [FR] Troglodyte de Caroline | [DE] Carolina-Zaunkonig | [ES] Cucarachero de Carolina | [NL] Carolina-winterkoning


Genus Species subspecies Breeding Range Breeding Range 2 Non Breeding Range
Troglodytes ludovicianus
Thryothorus ludovicianus NA, MA e USA to Guatemala and Nicaragua
Thryothorus ludovicianus albinucha
Thryothorus ludovicianus berlandieri
Thryothorus ludovicianus burleighi
Thryothorus ludovicianus lomitensis
Thryothorus ludovicianus ludovicianus
Thryothorus ludovicianus miamensis
Thryothorus ludovicianus nesophilus
Thryothorus ludovicianus oberholseri
Thryothorus ludovicianus subfulvus
Thryothorus ludovicianus tropicalis

Physical charateristics

A large wren, near the size of a sparrow. Warm rusty brown above, buff below; conspicuous white eyebrow stripe.

Listen to the sound of Carolina Wren

[audio: Wren.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 28 cm wingspan max.: 31 cm
size min.: 12 cm size max.: 14 cm
incubation min.: 12 days incubation max.: 16 days
fledging min.: 12 days fledging max.: 14 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 3  
      eggs max.: 7  


North America, Middle America : East USA to Guatemala and Nicaragua


Tangles, undergrowth, suburbs, gardens, towns.
Common in the undergrowth of deciduous or mixed woods, and in thickets along forest edges. Also lives in suburban areas, especially where some dense low growth and tangles have been left undisturbed.


May mate for life. Pairs remain together all year; male and female often sing in duet.
Nest: Site is in any cavity, including natural hollows in stumps, old woodpecker holes, crevices among upturned roots o
f fallen trees, sometimes middle of brushpile; also in birdhouses, crevices in buildings, on shelf in garage, other artificial sites. Usually less than 10′ above the ground. Nest is bulky mass of twigs, leaves, weeds, with lining of softer material such a
s moss, grass, animal hair, feathers. A piece of snakeskin is frequently added. Often a domed nest, with entrance on side. Both sexes help build.
Eggs: 5-6, sometimes 4-8. White with brown blotches usually concentrated at larger end. Incubation is by female only, 12-14 days; male may feed female during incubation.
Young: Both parents bring food for nestlings. Young leave nest about 12-14 days after hatching. 2-3 broods per year.

Feeding habits

Mostly insects.
Feeds primarily on insects of many kinds, especially caterpillars, beetles, true bugs, grasshoppers, crickets, and many others. Also feeds on many spiders, some millipedes and snails. Sometimes catches an
d eats small lizards or tree frogs. Also eats berries and small fruits, especially in winter, and some seeds.
Behavior: Usually forages in pairs, actively exploring low tangles, foliage, bark of trunks and branches, and the ground. Sometimes comes to bird feeders for suet, peanuts, other items.


This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be increasing, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Carolina Wren status Least Concern


Resident, eastern United States, eastern Mexico.
b Migration: Permanent resident. May wander north of breeding range, especially in fall.

Distribution map

Carolina Wren distribution range map

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