You may have noticed wrens visiting your yard. If you’ve ever watched them chase away other birds from the feeder or listened to them warbling loudly to each other, you may have wondered: are wrens good birds to have around? What are the benefits and drawbacks of attracting them to your yard? Keep reading–in this article, we will answer both of these questions and more.
What You'll Learn Today
What Are Wrens?
Wrens are adorable little songbirds that live primarily in North and South America. One species of wren is found in the Eurasian regions; there are 88 species in total.
These birds are about three to eight inches long and rarely weigh more than one to two ounces. Many are much lighter.
Wrens are highly active birds with big voices. You can hear their bird call in the video below:
Wrens can differ in appearance depending on the species; however, most are varying shades and patterns of brown and beige. Many have banded wings and a lighter colored stripe above each eye which looks like an eyebrow.
Many types of wrens build nests around manmade structures and buildings. This has led many people to wonder if it’s okay to have these cute little birds around their house.
Are Wrens Good Birds to Have Around?
Many people enjoy having wrens in their neighborhood.
As mentioned, the birds are highly active, so if you get to see them, you will likely be treated to an entertaining bird show. They tend to hold their tails upright, which adds to the cuteness factor.
Wrens may build nests in the crook of a gutter, in a windowsill, or in a cavity of your house wall. Many species, especially the house wren, seem to prefer being close to people–and you need not have any fear of this.
Wrens are generally harmless to humans. In fact, there are many good reasons to have them around.
What Are Some Benefits of Having Wrens in Your Yard?
Wrens eat large amounts of insects, and they like all different varieties.
If you have a garden, having wrens in your yard may help keep down the population of pest insects. In fact, if you have enough of them, they may eliminate your need to spray for insects around your house and yard.
So, natural pest control is one of the most noticeable benefits of having wrens around.
As mentioned before, wrens are cute little birds that produce a variety of loud songs. Despite living close to people, they often try to stay out of sight; that said, if you get to see them hopping around your porch, eating from your bird feeder, or caring for their young, this will be a most enjoyable experience.
If you enjoy putting up nesting boxes for birds, then wrens will be eager house guests. They prefer building their nests inside cavities, so offering nesting boxes will provide the perfect spot for them.
What’s more, creating nesting boxes for them can be as easy as repurposing old coffee cans.
What Are Some Drawbacks of Having Wrens in Your Yard?
People love to have these perky little birds around; but there are a few ways in which wrens can become annoyances.
For one thing, they are loud.
Imagine having several families of wrens sharing your property or competing for territory. Though you may enjoy hearing one or two birds chirping away from time to time, you may not enjoy hearing an incessant chorus every time you open a window or step outside.
Even a single wren may become annoying if it tries to chase other birds away from the feeder or feels threatened by any animal (or person) it deems as an intruder.
Which brings us to another point: wrens are extremely territorial.
If you have a fairly small yard, you will only want to put up a single nesting box. The birds may still fight over it temporarily, but once one mating pair has claimed the territory, the conflict should let up somewhat.
Nesting boxes should typically be placed several hundred feet apart and out of sight of each other. If wrens at one nesting box can see the family at the next one, they will become aggressive and try to chase each other out of the territory.
Having too many wrens around may also be a problem if you want to keep a healthy population of beneficial insects in your yard. Remember, wrens don’t discriminate when it comes to their next meal–they will eat all types of insects.
While all of these drawbacks may be deal breakers for some people, others will be willing to live with them for the sake of having wrens around.
If you can find ways to keep them from fighting over territory, and keep them from congregating too close to the house and overwhelming you with their songs, then chances are you will enjoy many benefits of attracting wrens to your yard.
Wrens are perky, energetic little birds which often seem to prefer living near human dwellings. They have loud voices and can be extremely territorial, but they are also beneficial–they can help control insect populations in your yard and will be only too happy to move into your nesting boxes.