Tuesday, January 6, 2015
Just as I was observing how we didn't get many interesting birds at our inner-city birdfeeders these days, this little brown fellow flitted in today and went to work on the suet. "Oh look," I cried, "a wren!" But what's a wren doing here in winter? A quick check of my bird book confirmed my ID of this bird as a Carolina Wren (Thryosorus ludovicianus) and informed me that this species has been wintering farther and farther north in recent decades.
Isn't it curious that a wren with the name Carolina would winter this far north, while the Winter Wren (Troglodytes hiemalis) migrates south for the winter? Actually, a distribution map in one of my bird guides shows the Winter Wren occasionally wintering over in some areas of New York State, although not this far north. But there'd be no mistaking that wee little bird for this big guy (relatively speaking) with his broad white eyebrow, rusty-brown plain breast, and white chin.
I hope he ate enough of that suet to make it through the bitter cold that has settled upon us now, and I also hope he might stay around through the summer, when we might hear his cheerful "teakettle, teakettle, teakettle" ringing through the shrub thicket around my back yard.