Bird Pictures - Carolina Wren Babies and Nests

Carolina Wrens Eat Insects

Carolina Wrens eat many insects that attack food crops.
Carolina Wrens eat many insects that attack food crops. | Source

Carolina Wrens - the Farmer's Friend

Carolina Wrens will build a nest in just about any cavity, natural or man made. They are perky little cinnamon brown birds with a loud voice who eat thousands of insects each year. They can be found in the north, but do better where winters are not so cold.

Pairs mate for life and will usually remain together all year long. They can raise as many as 4 broods a year here in Louisiana. When they are raising young, more insects are devoured.

Unlike their cousin, the House Wren, they get along well with other cavity nesting birds like Bluebirds, Prothonotary Warblers and others.

We've taken many pictures of the adult wrens as well as their nests and babies. This page is about their nesting habits, their young and their value to the gardener or anyone who raises their own food.

Carolina Wrens will Nest Almost Anywhere

Carolina Wren nest in a Christmas Wreath that was left up too long.
Carolina Wren nest in a Christmas Wreath that was left up too long. | Source

Quirky Nesting Sites of Carolina Wrens

CAWR nest in a cinder block on the back porch.
CAWR nest in a cinder block on the back porch. | Source
Another pair chose a shelf on the potting bench for their nest.
Another pair chose a shelf on the potting bench for their nest. | Source
Flower pots and hanging baskets are other favorite nesting sites.
Flower pots and hanging baskets are other favorite nesting sites. | Source
On a window ledge next to the Hurricane emergency window air conditioner.
On a window ledge next to the Hurricane emergency window air conditioner. | Source

Building Nests in Unusual Places

Next to Prothonotary Warblers, Carolina Wrens should get the prize for creative choices in nesting sites. They can make any cavity work and have been known to nest in everything from motorcycle and bicycle helmets to the vents of boats and everywhere in between.

Of course, they will nest in normal places like birdhouses and tree cavities, but they seem to prefer places around buildings, homes and other man made structures.

Here's a quick list of some of the od places that we know of.

  • Cinder Blocks
  • Plastic bowls
  • Hanging Baskets
  • Bicycle Helmet
  • Motorcycle Helmet
  • Christmas Wreath
  • Potting Bench Shelf
  • Open Eaves of a House
  • Spare Tire on the Back of the Van
  • Roll of Carpet in the Out Building
  • Pocket of Clothes Hanging on the Line
  • Mailbox
  • Flower Pots
  • Topsy Turvy Tomato Planter
  • Large Tin Cans in a Garage
  • Vents on a Boat


I'm sure there are many more. If you know of an unusual nesting site, please tell us about it in the comments section and I'll add it to the list.


Feed Me, Feed Me!

Baby Wrens are Very Hungry
Baby Wrens are Very Hungry | Source

Nest with Abandoned Eggs

This nest was removed from a nest box on our Bluebird trail after the Carolina Wrens abandoned it.  Notice the broken egg.
This nest was removed from a nest box on our Bluebird trail after the Carolina Wrens abandoned it. Notice the broken egg. | Source

Nest in a Hanging Basket

They grow fast, but still need to be fed.
They grow fast, but still need to be fed. | Source
Just about ready to leave the nest.
Just about ready to leave the nest. | Source
Mom is back with a juicy bug, but the babies have fledged.  She follows their trail.
Mom is back with a juicy bug, but the babies have fledged. She follows their trail. | Source

Eggs, Babies and Fledglings

The male wren builds many "dummy" nests in different places in the pair's territory. The female inspects each and chooses one and finishes it.

She lays 4-7 brown speckled eggs in the dome shaped nest.

She incubates the eggs for 12 to 16 days.

When the chicks hatch, they have no feathers, only a little fuzz and are blind and helpless.

They grow quickly because both parents take care of the young, making hundreds of trips back and forth to the nest, bringing tasty insects.

When the babies are 12 to 14 days old, they leave the nest. The parents still feed them, but within 2 weeks, the pair has normally started building another nest.


Both Parents feed the Young

Father Wren brings food to the family.
Father Wren brings food to the family. | Source

Insectivores

Unlike the Northern Cardinal, Carolina Wrens don't have bright, striking coloration. Both male and female are a pretty cinnamon brown with a buffy underside. What they lack in looks, they make up for, in insect eating ability. They eat primarily members of the Hymenoptera family which includes sawflies, wasps, bees and ants. I've also seen them eat crickets and grasshoppers.

They enjoy suet, all year round, but especially in the winter and early spring. Down here, where it is hot and humid, we make a "no drip" suet from equal parts of wet ingredients and dry.

Here's Our "No Drip" Suet recipe:

Wet Ingredients

  • 2 cups animal lard
  • 1 cup crunchy peanut butter

Dry Ingredients

  • 1 cup oatmeal,
  • 1 cup cornmeal,
  • 1/2 cup flour,
  • 1/2 wheat germ or shelled sunflower seeds

Don't substitute vegetable shortening, they need the real, high cholesterol, old-fashioned lard made from animal fat.

Mix it all together and press into a pan lined with wax paper. Put it in the refrigerator or freezer to harden some. Cut into blocks to fit your feeder. The rest can be stored wrapped in the wax paper in a zip lock bag in the freezer.

Both the male and the female feed the young. Most male wrens are excellent fathers. I have observed a male singing in the Mimosa tree after bringing food to the nest. When insects are in short supply, the parents often feed the young suet.


Male Carolina Wren Singing

The male Carolina Wrens sing loudly and often.
The male Carolina Wrens sing loudly and often. | Source

Songs and Calls

You usually know when the Carolina Wrens are in the area. The males love to sing and the females are constantly vocalizing. For their size, Carolina Wrens can sing exceptionally loudly. If you weren't watching this small brown bird sing, you wouldn't believe that the blasting song could have come from him.

They are also one of the first birds to send up the alarm when a predator is in the area. Then they will keep fussing even after all the other birds have gathered around.

Carolina Wren Singing Video

Carolina Wren Babies Nap

Young Carolina Wrens growing feathers.
Young Carolina Wrens growing feathers. | Source

More by this Author


Tell us about your Carolina Wren nests or just leave a comment. 71 comments

Apostle Jack profile image

Apostle Jack 5 years ago from Atlanta Ga

They are so wonderful.I praise God every day for His ingenuity and creativity.Great hub.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 5 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Thanks Apostle Jack. Every day I try to do something to help God's creatures.


annmackiemiller profile image

annmackiemiller 5 years ago from Bingley Yorkshire England

love it - voted up and stuff


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 5 years ago from South Louisiana Author

The Carolina Wrens say, "Thank you". They are busy right now, working on another nest somewhere in or around the old, ugly garden shed.


JimmieWriter profile image

JimmieWriter 5 years ago from Memphis, TN USA

I love your bird pages. I learn so much. The bird call videos are especially helpful.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 5 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Jimmie, Thanks so much. I'm still learning to sort out some of the less common bird calls and I find that the more you hear them, the better you remember them, especially since I'm more of a visual learner.


carredsal profile image

carredsal 5 years ago from New Jersey

Loved your pics of the babies...Carolina wrens are my of my favorite birds....:)


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 5 years ago from South Louisiana Author

carredsal, Me, too. It's hard not to like Carolina Wrens. They are such perky little birds with many good qualities... and they eat lots of bugs! ;)


Judy Haughton-James 5 years ago

I am always fascinated by pictures and articles on birds as over the years my twin and I have been avid bird enthusiasts. As a matter of fact we have a huge collection of bird figurines which now stands as a memorial to the shared love that we have had for our feathered friends. Sadly my twin sister passed away on October 16, 2008.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 5 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Judy, Most of the members of my family are bird enthusiasts like you and your twin. We plant and provide nesting sites for the birds and we watch and photograph the birds.

It is good that you have all the lovely figurines as a memorial for your sister and the birds, that you both loved.

I lost my Mom in 2008 and I have created a memory garden for her and for the others who have passed on.


Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 5 years ago from East Coast, United States

Such a wonderful hub and marvelous pictures of the Carolina wren. We have them, as well as house wrens up here in Maryland. They are out making noise in the yard for the better part of the day. I love them!


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 5 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Thanks Dolores, The little Carolina Wrens are a hoot to watch. Especially when they are feeding young.


Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 5 years ago from East Coast, United States

I love how one moment they sing the prettiest of songs, then they scold in the most annoying (yet amusing) manner.


aviannovice profile image

aviannovice 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

Voted awesome and following. This was a wonderful hub on nearly everything that you need to know about the Carolina Wren. It was superb!


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

I'm glad you enjoyed it. My Carolina Wrens are busy building nests. Soon they will be ridding the garden of insect pests.


Paulette 4 years ago

I had a wren lay 5 eggs in a bowl on my porch. I've been watching her thru my kitchen window bring bugs to feed the babies. This morning I didn't hear the babies and was worried. I peeked into the nest..now I wish I hadn't. One of the babies was ripped to shreds and the other 4 were dead. This bowl was on a narrow shelf with other stuff surrounding it. There's no way a cat or raccoon could have gotten on it without knocking something off. The nest was barely touched yet all the babies were dead. I was in hysterics..this has been such a sad day. They were just getting their feathers and would have been gone soon :(


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

If you have House Wrens or House Sparrows in your area, one of them could have been the culprit. They have been known to kill the mother bird, too. Even bluebirds, which are closer in size to the house sparrows are no match for them. House Sparrows are a European finch which was a cage bird that was released in New York, many years ago, so it is not protected by the native birds act.

I'm sorry that happened. It's so upsetting when the young are killed. Hopefully, the Carolina Wrens will choose a more secure nesting site next time.


Paulette 4 years ago

That's what I don't understand..she built the nest on my porch where all the bird feeders are. So there's all sorts of birds on the porch.I have both house sparrows & finch..but I never noticed either of them or any other bird for that matter pay attention to the nest.

The wren's aren't very choosy on nesting spots for sure. They love my garage and my husbands work boots..we had "boot babies"..I would have never dreamed another bird would do something like that. Now I know..life lesson learned the hard way.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Yes, wrens love to build their nests in and around structures and sometimes don't make the wisest choices. I have a nest box trail and all the literature about placing houses says to not place them near feeders, because feeders attract predators. I guess your little wrens didn't read the book.


Paulette 4 years ago

No, I don't think the mama read that book at all!! She chose a Rubbermaid bowl..last year it was an old tea pitcher. She prefers plastic apparently! lol. I have a question about some Eastern bluebirds. I had 2 make a nest in a house..they've been raising babies here for years, but I had never seen them do this before. I noticed the parents swooping and chattering outside the house. At first i thought something was after the babies. But we looked, even into the house, but couldn't find anything wrong. But they were back doing the same thing this morning. So I got worried and looked in the box and it was empty. My fear is that something got the babies. I'm not sure how old they were. Is that behavior normal when maybe they're trying to coax the babies out to learn to fly? After the wren's death I'm not sure I could handle losing another family.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Swooping and chattering sounds like a predator on the ground. When the babies are ready to fledge, they will sit near the hole and peep out. Then will sit in the opening and finally fly. Mom and Dad will sit in a nearby bush or tree and chirp to them, but don't normally swoop or chatter. Possibly a snake or rodent or even a cat was on the ground and the parents were trying to fend it off. Sorry.

It is wise to put predator guards below the nest box. The North American Bluebird Society site has a lot of good information about houses and predator guards. http://www.nabluebirdsociety.org/


Carroll 4 years ago

We have a nest in a copper watering can inside the covered breezeway on top a baker's rack, just beside the garage door.


Nancy T 4 years ago

We live in Murphy, NC and have a flower box under a bedroom window in which we grow catnip for our cats. The wrens have built a nest in the catnip and it now contains three eggs. The parents come to the nest but I don't see them on the eggs. Does anyone know if they "keep" more than one nest at a time? But building their home in CATNIP. What a hoot!


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Yes those are brave (or not so smart) little wrens. If the nest has only 3 eggs, they are probably not finished yet. Carolina wrens usually lay 4-6 eggs and begin incubating on the next to the last egg.

Catnip is thought to be an insect pest deterrant. You must have a large healthy plant. I hope your cats stay indoors and you harvest it for them and that no neighbor cats come to visit. Thanks for the comment.


fayputtz 4 years ago

I have a pair of wrens in my birdhouse it seems as though the weaved a long piece of grass outside the house in the leaves of the tree are they marking the nest?


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

I'm not sure. It could be that the piece of grass got tangled in the tree when they were brining in nesting material. Watch and see what happens.


dskyyksd 4 years ago

I have a nest of babies in a planter on my front porch that are 11 days old. They may fledge tomorrow. Too many cats in the neighborhood and I am so scared for them.

I lost a nest of them in my greenhouse last year when they were ten days old, and I was heartbroken.

This year I have guarded the nest with motion detector water sprinklers, ultrasonic repellent, a heavy duty water pistol, and surveillance cameras.

The cats have gotten very bold today in spite of my measures. They sense it. Daddy tried to call them out of the nest today, but they aren't ready.

One more night to get through without a nest disaster. I am going to do what I can to keep the cats away while the family moves out and gets to cover. I know some of them probably won't survive to adulthood, but I've given it my best shot.

BTW, one of my coworkers found a Carolina Wren nest in his toolbelt in his work shed. He did the right thing and waited for the babies to fledge to use his toolbelt.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

You are indeed the most dedicated bird foster parent-protector that I have ever heard of. I'll say a little prayer that your bunch will fledge without mishap. I wish more people would keep their cats inside, at least during bird breeding season. Cudoes to your friend with the nest in the tool belt. Carolina Wrens will build a nest just about any place that will hold one. Good luck and thanks for caring so much about these little creatures.


dskyyksd 4 years ago

Prayers answered, Naturegirl, yours and mine. The babies fledged half an hour ago, and they all made it into a nice high wall of vines and brush with Mom and Dad. Love my Scarecrow water sprinklers.


Marie 4 years ago

Hi, we just moved to North Carolina from Florida and have our first wren family nesting on our back deck in a birdhouse on a shelf very close to our dining table. They don't seem too concerned that we are nearby. We saw three fledglings following the male around while he was building the nest. Is it normal for them to help young from another brood while beginning a new one? They are surely fascinating and adorable! There is a feeder nearby. What kind of predators do I need to worry about? I haven't seen any neighborhood cats in the garden (we have dogs). Thanks for your great blog!


dskyyksd 4 years ago

It is not at all uncommon for Carolina wrens to start a new brood with fledglings in tow. Once Mom has the new eggs laid and starts to incubate, Dad has to take care of the fledglings by himself.

Cats are by far the biggest threat to your birds. Dogs can be a threat, too, but they can be confined outdoors if necessary.

Owls and raccoons are among the wild predators. Don't leave food outside for your dogs. That will draw cats and raccoons.

What I'd like to find is a continuous emission source for high frequency sound that repels cats but doesn't bother the birds. I have one of those Catstop things, but it doesn't trigger reliably and only covers a slice of ground. I have some Scarecrow motion detector water sprinklers that I just used to save a nest from a herd of cats next door.

The cats probably got the babies anyway after they fledged. I live on rented property with very little ground cover. The cover they flew into from the nest is on the cat woman's property.

I saw one of the fledglings making a very long flight to a tree across the street. I think they were trying to move across the street and got turned back because they were breaching another wren family's territory.

By the end of the day, I no longer saw or heard them, and the cats looked fat and happy down on the ground. I hate them.

Every time I see Daddy now, he's by himself. He's hiding high in an oak tree now, singing from time to time. We actually did see him on a lower branch yesterday with another bird. We couldn't tell if it was Mom or a fledgling or some other bird.

Chased up high in an oak tree isn't a high quality of life for birds that live in ground cover. Is there any hope that he got his family to safety and is just making drastic adjustments to his situation? I really feel badly for him. He picked a lousy neighborhood to live in.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Father wren probably grew up in that neighborhood, too. Carolina wrens will nest 2-3 times. I'm sure the reason for that is the high mortality rate. A few of the babies may make it. It's not uncommon for the young to disappear after fledging, only to reappear a week or more later when they are stronger and can fly.

As for the cats, we can't fault them for doing what comes naturally. It is the person who cares for them that is responsible. It is a shame that the cat lady doesn't think about the habitat as a whole. In most cases these individuals are so set in their ways and for whatever reason, talking to them does little good. So many people still think that it's okay to let your cats run wild and many don't spay or neuter their pets. So sad that pet owners aren't more responsible.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Marie,

dskyyksd's comment about predators and food near the nest was right on target. It is important that you not place food (even bird seed or suet) near an active nest. Besides the mammals, there are birds like blue jays and house sparrows that will attack a nest. Some rodents that are attracted to bird seed will also rob the nest.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

dskyyksd,

I just remembered something. When we lived in a subdivision, we, too, had trouble with the neighbor's cats. My husband contacted the zoo and was able to pick up a bag of lion and tiger poo. He placed little piles of it in strategic places around the edge of our yard. For a while we didn't have trouble with the cats and none were harmed.


Marie 4 years ago

Thanks for the tips! I'll move the feeder. I think we're safe from cats and haven't seen any raccoon either (yet). Little mama is safe and sound right now. So we shall see. :)


GaelDC 4 years ago

We have a nest of Carolina Wrens in a bird house near the front door. I will ove it once the babies are gone. We also have an outdoor cat that is now on house lock-down from sunup to dark until the fledges are gone. She's managing just fine. After this experience I understand even more why Vets and other animal caregivers urge owners always to keep cats indoors. Meanwhile, if there were a campaign to keep cats indoors during breeding season, what would be the timing be for, say, Mid-Atlantic?


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Oh, gee, I live in south Louisiana where the Carolina Chickadees begin breeding in February. In the Mid-Atlantic, maybe March or April through summer. Check with some birders or bird clubs in your area to find out more accurate dates.


Bird lover! 4 years ago

I absolutely LOVE Carolina wrens! I've raised a handful of them before and it's quite easy lol but they are a joy to have around!:)


uptowngirl61 4 years ago

A few months ago, I found that we had a Carolina Wren nest in our garage, built in a flower pot on a shelf. It's right beside our extra freezer. I check on her and I talk to her every time I go out there. She isn't afraid of us at all. The pair of wrens raised 3 babies. When they all left, I just didn't get around to getting rid of it and to my surprise, I walked by the other day and she is reusing the same nest and now has 5 eggs! I have never heard of a wren reusing a nest for the second brood of the season. Is this common? I am happy she is back!


Larry & Sandy 4 years ago

We have a tin bird house that was put up for decoration only. Now we have an active nest with babies, and are concerned about the temperature inside the tin house. It is going to be too hot for them? It is going to be around 100 degrees in Michigan for the next 3 days. Do you have any knowledge about how hot it can get and the babies will still be OK. Thanks, Larry & Sandy


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

You are right to be concerned if the house is in full sun. Depending on how it is situated, you could try to construct an awning of some kind over it. Perhaps with a conduit or pvc pipe with a right angle and shorter piece and some shade cloth or something that would provide shade attached to it.

If you try it, be sure to get everything set up before you start to put it up so that you disturb the birds as little as possible.


bird watcher 4 years ago

I was to leave on a ten day vacation but knew I had birds nesting in my garage. I left the door open a little on the bottom hoping the birds would still find their way in and out. When I returned I noticed three eggs in the nest. I supppose they are not finished yet as I now know they are Carolina Wrens and expect a few more eggs. They are very safe from predators and quite a noisy pair. I enjoyed watching them both build the nest and am thrilled to have them. Thanks for such great information about my little insect eating friends.


Kristi 4 years ago

Hi I think I have baby wrens in my old Christmas wreath by my back door. I have been watching the mom and or dad for weeks going back and forth to the nest..and even watched it week before feeding..Now I don't see either parent.I heard the crying babies all day yesterday, but never say parents feed them. They were much bigger and really loud with fuzzy heads. They are peeping softer this morning still looking for food. I still have not seen parents go to nest. I see that similar looking birds appear to be building a nest nearby in a bird house now. Do you think these are the parents..and have they abandoned the poor dears? I am worried that they are dying. I can hear them peeping all morning...Should I take them to a wildlife rehabilitator or leave them in hope?


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 4 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Carolina wrens fledge from 12-14 days from hatching. When the babies get close to fledging, they are very loud. The parents rush in & drop off an insect and leave. The babies are usually quiet when the parents aren't around. The young usually leave the nest 1 at a time over a period of a few hours.

Unless something killed both parents, they probably have not abandoned the nest. Could it be that there aren't as many babies, because some have fledged? Have you taken a quick head count? In my experience, when I hear the babies chirping loudly, the parents are feeding them at that moment. If some have fledged, then the chirping won't be as loud because there are fewer babies to make noise.


dan white 3 years ago

I have a nesting pair of Bewick wrens on my small covered back porch in the Dallas area of Texas. The nest is in an old metal coffee can where I was saving some seeds which also had the dried 'sticks & stems'. The can is on an open shelf about 3' high in my gardening cabinet on an open shelf. She startled me the first time she flew out. There are 5 eggs. I had also disturbed one of the 'dummy' nests under an old wood pallet during my spring gardening. I am so excited; this is only my 2nd year at back yard bird watching. What a Joy!


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 3 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Congratulations on the nest. Once baby wrens grow feathers, fledging happens quickly. Have your camera ready to document the event.


J. Hartman 3 years ago

We live in Florida and a wren built a nest in a paint can in our garage on a shelf about 3 feet up. We have been faithfully watching the mother bird coming and going for a while. She laid only 2 eggs and has been sitting on them about 2 weeks and this morning they hatched. Both the male and female bird have been back and forth today. We leave the garage open during the day and close it at night and she stays there all night, then leaves for a very short time when we open it in the morning. She continues to sit on the nest today even though they have hatched. She isn't bothered by us being in the garage, my husband can be working all around her with the radio playing and she just looks at him. I hope a predator doesn't get them, they are so amazing.


Linda Hughes 3 years ago

do wrens eat dead bugs


Linda Hughes 3 years ago

I was wondering if I put flea and tick stuff on my fenced in back yard, if it would hurt the wrens feeing their babies. Don't want to harm them. So didn't know if they eat dead bugs or not....


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 3 years ago from South Louisiana Author

If you are talking about synthetic pesticides, yes, those will harm insect eating birds. They can also harm people. I use organic flea eating nematodes and keep my yard cut for the ticks. I also use advantage or Frontline directly on the pet. The nematodes can be ordered from Amazon or Gardens Alive. You mix them with water and sprinkle them around. They search out and eat flea eggs & larvae and will multiply & stay in your soil as long as the fleas are there.


Kurt 3 years ago

Here in Lovettsville VA, they nested in a bluebird box I placed on my windowsill. One thing I've observed is that often the fledgling will pass a white object to the parent after the parent feeds it. The parent then takes it away. I assume the baby is passing off its waste to be removed by the parent. Amazing that the fledgling knows to do that! Is this common behavior in nesting birds?


toby 3 years ago

My husband and I are battling a pair of wrens for weeks who insist upon rebuilding their nest as many times in a day as we tear it down underneath our boat lift canopy on a corner of the metal support beam.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 3 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Kurt, Yes the white object is called a fecal sac. The experts say that the parents take it away to keep the nest clean so that predators will not be alerted to young by the smell. Thanks for commenting.


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 3 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Toby, I'm a bit confused about why your husband feels the need to tear down the nest if it is off in the corner of the metal support beam. Is he afraid the babies will poop on the boat? Are you sure these are Carolina wrens and not house sparrows? Normally Carolina wrens will abandon a nest if it is disturbed, but European house sparrows are relentless. They make a messy nest with grass, leaves & trash; whatever they can find.

House wrens are another possibility, but I am not familiar with their nest building habits.


Kate5620 3 years ago

Just discovered a Carolina Wren nest in my hanging basket right next to the front door. I thought they had abandoned the nest so I took a look and there are two little eggs in there. Hung the basket back up and, sure enough, the Mom is back. I' m so excited to have them that close! Another wonderful gift from our Lord.


AJ 3 years ago

Seems like the chicks we're watching have been feathering but have only recently opened their eyes. One was laying very near the opening of the nest today. Do you think it will be much longer until they fledge?


naturegirl7 profile image

naturegirl7 3 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Carolina wren babies fledge when they are 12-14 days old.


John Eco Niche 2 years ago

I have read the unusual places these birds nest. But quite frankly, I may not have the most unusual place, but rather the MOST UNUSUAL PROXIMITY..that would be inside my HOUSE. A nesting pair, which have been hanging around since last year, have made their way into my laundry room via the back door. Last year they attempted to build in a box on top of a shelf inside my laundry room, but because I had to secure the house, I would not let them build. This year I let them build and nest and I am leaving the door open for them. I have the pictures, now I just need to post them.


holly50 2 years ago

A precious wren couple laid four eggs in a planter near my back door. Only one baby survived…i'm not sure what happened to the other two eggs but they are gone. One egg is still unhatched. Today, about 7 days after the baby hatched, i found the baby dead in the nest with ants all over her. I was devastated. What should I do with the dead baby? I saw the mama come and look, but she has not been back since. Why did the baby die?


John Eco Niche 2 years ago

Hello Holly50,

The wren, like most small animals, have a shorter life span, are subject to higher predation, and may experience other casualties specific to their species. Given their situation and what information is provided here, they will nest and raise a few broods a year to help compensate for their losses. We don't know what circumstances led to the loss of your nest. It almost sounds like a few factors were in play. Possibly illness and inexperience of a young parent played a roll. Other factors could have been involved, but unless a study is done, we will never know. One clue is an unhatched egg and the death of the baby. Other two eggs were missing possibly removed from the parent. You can bet that the parents were on their way to build another nest. Hopefully they will try again and they may just stick around your house and try again in a safer place where predators (ants, etc.) wont find the nest easily.


Kelly reeder 2 years ago

We have a Carolina wrens nest in a squirrel proof bird feeder. There are at least four babies. The mama comes and goes into the nest fine, we have taped her feeding 3 times in 11 minutes. We are worried about the dad, he will bring food, but he tries to feed the babies through the glass. We think he can't figure out how to fly up and in through the 1-2 in space at top. He goes through all kinds of movement to try to feed, but he fails. Should we be concerned?. And move birds to a safer place.


karen 2 years ago

I saw 4 eggs in the nest and they have hatched. When do the babies start getting active. They are over a week old and have not seen them come out of the nest, nothing. I am not sure they are still alive


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naturegirl7 2 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Kelly, Hopefully the male will follow the female's lead and figure it out. It's best to leave the birds where they are.


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naturegirl7 2 years ago from South Louisiana Author

Karen, Congrats on the 4 eggs. The young will leave the nest about 2 weeks from hatching. As the babies grow, the parents will return to the nest with food more often. You will probably hear the babies begging for food before you see them.


Karen 2 years ago

The nest is in a house plant on the back porch. Will the babies come out of the nest and walk around in the plant or show any activity before they fly away? Thanks


martha 20 months ago

C. wren built nest in flower pot very close to front door while I was out of town. If I move the flower pot to another area, say 5-6 feet away, will the wren find the nest again? I'm afraid wrens will leave this nest now because of traffic in and out of door. thanks to anyone who knows.


Deborah 18 months ago

A Carolina wren built a nest in my wheelbarrow and four of the five eggs hatched they lived about nine or ten days and then they died. The parents stopped feeding them and we tried to feed them but they died. Could being down in the wheelbarrow cause them to die? They chirped and hopped around that day. The next morning they were dead. Why would the parents stop feeding them?


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naturegirl7 18 months ago from South Louisiana Author

Perhaps something happened to one of the parents or maybe the death of the chicks was caused by some weather related catastrophe such as heavy rain or a drop in the temperature. When birds build nests so close to the ground many predators can reach them. I'm sorry your baby birds died. Hopefully the parents will build another nest but in a safer place.


Angela 18 months ago

Found this wren in my husband disc golf bag in our shed. It found a hole in the roof and made a nest with two eggs!


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naturegirl7 18 months ago from South Louisiana Author

If there are only 2 eggs, then she will probably lay 3-4 more.


Tracey 17 months ago

I have a nest in my hose reel that I use everyday for watering my flowers! 5 eggs - very funny looking nest:)

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    Yvonne L. B. (naturegirl7)132 Followers
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    Yvonne has been photographing and studying birds for 40+ years. She maintains bird and butterfly gardens in her Louisiana backyard habitat.



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