Family Old World Warblers and Parrotbills (Sylviidae)

Least Concern

Wrentit (Chamaea fasciata)


French: Cama brune German: Chaparralgrasmücke Spanish: Camea

Parus fasciatus


, 1845,

Monterey, Monterey County, California, USA


Additional proposed races include intermedia (from interior and S areas of San Francisco Bay region of California), synonymized with rufula, and canicauda (from NW Baja California), treated as synonym of henshawi. Five subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. f. phaea Osgood, 1899 – extreme W USA from W Oregon (Columbia R) S along humid coastal belt to California border.
  • C. f. margra Browning, 1992 – interior S Oregon.
  • C. f. rufula Ridgway, 1903 – NW California coast from Oregon border S to San Francisco Bay area.
  • C. f. fasciata (Gambel, 1845) – coastal C California (from W Monterey County S to C San Luis Obispo County).
  • C. f. henshawi Ridgway, 1882 – interior and coastal S California, and extreme NW Mexico (NW Baja California).
  • Descriptive notes

    14–16 cm; 14–15 g. Small greyish-brown babbler with vague pinkish tinge below, long and rounded tail. Nominate race has crown greyish mid-brown with vague darker... read more


    Song of male, usually from cover but sometimes from exposed perch, a series of loud, rather dry... read more


    Dense brushy and shrubby areas as are found in many habitats, including douglas fir (... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects, including caterpillars, butterflies and moths and their cocoons (Lepidoptera), beetles (Coleoptera), bugs (Hemiptera), ants (... read more


    Season Mar–Aug, start of breeding apparently timed in response to climatic conditions and to cues predicting conditions later in... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Abundant in cismontane shrublands, especially coastal scrub and chaparral. Range may be expanding to E & NE with deforestation, resulting in more... read more

    Recommended citation

    Collar, N. & Robson, C. (2020). Wrentit (Chamaea fasciata). 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 24 February 2020).