Canyon Wren

Small bird in a bush
Canyon Wrens are often seen perched on rocks or low bushes.

NPS Andrew Kuhn

Scientific Name
Canyon Wren: Catherpes mexicanus

  • Canyon wrens are some of the most commonly seen birds in the Grand Canyon.
  • They are often seen before they are heard.Their most common call is a series of notes that follow a pattern of "tee-tee-tee-tee-tew-tew-tew-tew" as they descend in pitch.
  • They have a small, orange-brown body that is flecked with black and white.Their tail is orange with horizontal black bars.Their throat is white.
  • They have a long, thin, curved bill.
  • Canyon wrens are found through most of the western United States and Mexico.
  • They prefer to move around canyon cliff sides and the jumbled rocks and thick undergrowth at the base of cliffs, making the Grand Canyon excellent habitat.
  • They are often seen perched on top of exposed boulders.
  • Canyon wren feed primarily on insects and spiders.They use their long bill to find insects in cracks and under rocks.
  • They build nests on ledges or holes on cliff sides.The nest is made out of a foundation of twigs, grass, and bark, and topped with softer material such as moss, leaves, and animal hair.
  • Females lay 4-6 eggs.The male parent will feed the female while she incubates the eggs, and both parents feed the chicks after they hatch.
  • Chicks leave the nest 15 days after hatching, but may stay near the parents for several weeks.

Last updated: May 19, 2016

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PO Box 129
Grand Canyon, AZ 86023



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