Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus)

by Cherie Southwick


Think you are “in-tune” with nature? Well, if you’ve heard the sweet songs of the Carolina wren, you might just be. This small, yet very vocal, animal is known to sing anywhere and at any time, and is known for being one of the loudest species of birds out there.

Although they don’t harmonize with their partners since the males are the only singers of this fine species, pairs are known to stay together for years, building their dome-shaped nests together out of anything from moss to trash to snakeskin.

Because they aren’t much for cold weather, these wrens are found throughout swamps, forests, farms and tree-filled neighborhoods in the southeastern parts of the U.S., and are known as the official state bird of South Carolina. The farthest north these little creatures have been known to live is the Great Lakes, although most of them don’t survive the colder winters there.

Where do these singers get their nutrients to fuel their vocal chords from? Most Carolina wrens feast on insects such as spiders but supplement their meals with berries and other fruits. With light yellowish-beige tummies, and brown upper coats, the Carolina wren blends in well with the plants of the Carolinas, and is the most common wren in our area. They are known to fly far less than they hop around through camouflaging grasses and shrubs since they have better luck foraging near plants than in the sky.

So, next time you hear a bird song coming from your backyard, or even from your mailbox (as some Carolina wrens have been known to live in), take a peek and a listen, and try your hand at identifying your very own friendly, fellow neighbors.

*****As the State Bird of South Carolina – and a gorgeous species – Sunrift Adventures and Wild South are both dedicated to protecting these avian adventurers and ensuring that their habitats remain in-tact. Wild South is proud to partner with Sunrift Adventures because we both inspire people to Enjoy, Value and Protect the Upstate of South Carolina and the Pisgah National Forest where many of our wild friends get out to paddle, pack and play.  Check out the many ways you can explore your forests and spot Carolina Wrens with a little help from the guys and gals at Sunrift –

wsw with sunrift




  1. Meg LeSchack on September 10, 2014 at 7:21 pm

    Beautiful pictures, affectionate description. I live in Massachusetts, not far from Boston. I’ve had a pair of Carolina wrens in my yard for at least 5 years. i ADORE all their calls. The Audubon Guides website has a great list of them that you can play. I wish you the best in preserving habitat.