Common Name
BEWICK'S WREN

Scientific Name
THRYOMANES BEWICKII

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Photo by Robert T. Maytum
Photo Courtesy of Robert T. Maytum

The current year-round range of Bewick's wren, Thyromanes bewickii, includes the Great Plains, Texas, the southwestern United States, the highlands of Mexico, the northwestern United States, and parts of California. Localized breeding and wintering areas are scattered throughout the United States. The species was once more common than it is today, but most Bewick's wren populations east of the Mississippi River have disappeared. Bewick's wren is a permanent resident of the lowland deserts and pinyon-juniper forests of southern Utah, but it is less common there in the winter. The species also breeds in northeastern Utah, but those populations migrate south for the winter.

Bewick's wren eats insects, either foraging along the ground or gleaning prey from the foliage of trees and shrubs. Pairs are monogamous, and breed in brushy areas of open woodlands and other open habitats. Bewick's wren is a cavity nester; nests are constructed in small enclosed areas such as tree cavities, nesting boxes, rock crevices, or the center of a brush pile. Pairs build a cup-shaped nest together using grasses and twigs, and line it with feathers. The female incubates her clutch of five to seven eggs for about two weeks, while the male brings food to her. Both parents feed the hatchlings, and the young leave the nest after about two weeks. The parents continue to feed the young for about two weeks after the young leave the nest.

Sources:

  • Ehrlich, P. R., D. S. Dobkin, and D. Wheye. 1988. The birder’s handbook[:] a field guide to the natural history of North American birds. Simon & Schuster, New York. xxx + 785 pp.

  • Kennedy, E. D., and D. W. White. 1997. Bewick’s Wren (Thryomanes bewickii). Birds of North America 315.

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