Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Cactus Wren

The Cactus Wren, although common in the southwest, is seldom seen in the rest of America. Most other members of the wren family are tiny birds. Yet size-wise, the Cactus Wren compares to the American Robin.

The Cactus Wren is well adapted to arid lowlands and montane thorn-scrub which is common in the lower reaches of California, Arizona, Texas and New Mexico.

Perching prominently, they are not secretive birds. Still, they won't let you get close. They'll fly away.

You'll find cactus wrens singing out their simple repetitive song atop thorny shrubs...typical habitat of the desert.

It's a pleasant song, raising slightly in volume and pitch, but not really musical.

These birds eats mostly insects and invertebrates found on the ground.

Surprisingly, they don't need standing water to drink.  All of their water needs are fulfilled from their food.

(Click any picture to enlarge.)

The sound of a Cactus Wren singing is a delightful discovery on a walk in the desert. You are likely to hear one before you see it.

In that case, consider yourself lucky. Ninety-five percent of America doesn't get the honor of a Cactus Wren's company.

Credits: Cornell Lab of Ornithology, All About Birds
Sibley's Guide to Birds