Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren by Paul Conover
© paul conover
Thryothorus ludovicianus
This species was first made known to science in 1790 by the famous English ornithologist, John Latham, who based his description on a specimen received by him from "Louisiana" (most likely from near New Orleans), hence the specific name ludovicianus. It is one of the commonest resident birds of Louisiana and one of the better known. Its vociferous outbursts, which are unbelievably loud for such a small bird, can be heard in our gardens as well as throughout the forests of the state. The song suggests the words tea-kettle, tea-kettle or wheedle, wheedle. Often one of a pair will emit the tea-kettle note and be answered nearby by its mate with a monosyllabic rattling sound.
Carolina Wrens build their bulky nests of leaves and sticks in all sorts of places near our houses. Not infrequently they select the most inconvenient kind of situation. This may be an old work hat, which we left in the garage and must now abandon temporarily until the little birds are raised and leave the nest. As I write this account, I have a pair nesting in my outdoor workshop on a small ledge where I keep various instruction booklets on the use and care of the lawnmower and other power tools. I can only hope that none of these booklets has to be consulted in the next few weeks!
The Carolina Wren is the largest of the six species of wrens in Louisiana, among which it is unique in being rich rusty brown above and very buffy below, except for its white throat. There is a light buffy line over the eye that gradually becomes whitish through fading. The five creamy white eggs have numerous brown, cinnamon brown, and lavender markings, which sometimes form a wreath about the larger end.
--George H. Lowery, Jr., 1974, Louisiana Birds

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