The Bewicks Wren of the Pacific Northwest
The Bewicks Wren will spend all year on the south coast of BC. You can hear them uttering a series of sharp notes followed by a buzzy rasp. When alarmed, it will alert other birds by accosting the intruder with a loud scolding. You can call these birds to you with a hissing sound that they think is another wren in distress.
A small member of the wren family, the Bewicks Wren is about 14 cm long. It is usually brown and gray. This songbird has an average length tail which is often cocked over its back. The tail is barred black and white on the outermost parts while it is brown and black in the middle part. Tail wagging from side to side is characteristic of the Bewicks Wren. Though most of its parts are brown, it has a white throat and its under parts are light gray. They have a long white stripe over the eye and a thin pointed bill.
Male and female birds look alike. Immature birds are similar to the adult birds. However, their chest feathers are a bit darker.
The Bewicks wren prefer to inhabit brushy areas with thick undergrowth. It can be found in areas such as yards, orchards, stream sides, and forests. It is a cavity nest builder and will build its nest in almost any cavity. The Bewicks Wren prefers to build nests in low places. It will even nest under bushes or brush heaps, but will also use birdhouses.
The nest of Bewicks Wren is mostly made up of sticks. It is lined with leaves, grass, and feathers. Male Bewicks Wrens build the nest for the female. In fact, they build several nests for the female to choose from.
Males sings a song which is similar to a song sparrow’s song during mating season. Bewicks wrens usually start nesting early in February. A pair will usually raises one brood per season. However, two broods are not that unusual.
It feeds mainly on insects and spiders. It finds it food by foraging along the ground and through the trees.