Family Wrens (Troglodytidae)

Least Concern

Happy Wren (Pheugopedius felix)


French: Troglodyte joyeux German: Glückszaunkönig Spanish: Cucarachero feliz

Thryothorus felix

P. L. Sclater

, 1860,

Juquila, Oaxaca, Mexico


In past, suggested as possibly conspecific with P. maculipectus. Six subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. f. sonorae van Rossem, 1930 – S Sonora and N Sinaloa, in NW Mexico.
  • P. f. pallidus (Nelson, 1899) – C Sinaloa and W Durango S to Jalisco and NW Michoacán.
  • P. f. lawrencii (Ridgway, 1878) – María Madre I (Tres Marías Group), off Nayarit (W Mexico).
  • P. f. magdalenae (Nelson, 1898) – María Magdalena I (Tres Marías Group).
  • P. f. grandis (Nelson, 1900) – drainage of R Balsas (S México, Morelos, SW Puebla, N Guerrero), in W Mexico.
  • P. f. felix (P. L. Sclater, 1860) – SW Mexico from SE Jalisco S to W Oaxaca.
  • Descriptive notes

    12·5–14 cm; 9–16·4 g. Nominate race has white supercilium, contrasting black sides of face and of neck with prominent white markings; crown and upper back deep... read more


    Song an arresting series of rollicking, gurgling whistles, delivered antiphonally by both sexes,... read more


    Dry tropical forest, including thorn-forest, and oak-hornbeam (Quercus-Carpinus)... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mostly invertebrates, including beetles (Coleoptera), caterpillars, bugs (Hemiptera), hymenopterans and others; some vegetable matter,... read more


    Breeds late May and Jun, island populations (lawrencii and magdalenae) several weeks later. Nest a retort-shaped bag of... read more


    Mostly sedentary; some evidence of vertical movements by higher-altitude populations at N edge of... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Quite common over much of its range. Appears to be able to tolerate substantial habitat disturbance.

    Recommended citation

    Kroodsma, D. & Brewer, D. (2018). Happy Wren (Pheugopedius felix). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 20 October 2018).