Canyon Wren
(Catherpes mexicanus)


Picture of bird
© Andrew A Reding - License
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The Canyon Wren is resident in the Okanagan and adjacent valleys in British Columbia. Christmas Bird Count data show a large increase in the population since 1970. The species was extirpated from the country in 1969 (Cannings et al. 1987) but is now well established throughout its historical range in Canada. Populations are susceptible to severe winters. This species has been identified as a priority for conservation and/or stewardship in one or more Bird Conservation Region Strategies in Canada.


Listing of the main designations for the species
DesignationStatusDateSubspecies, population
IUCN (Global)Least Concern2012 
Wild Species (Canada)Sensitive2010 
Bird Conservation Region StrategyPriority Species2013 

Population status

Geographic areaStatusReliability
CanadaLarge IncreaseHigh

Population estimate

Canada< 5,000 adults

Distribution maps


Migration strategy, occurrence


Responsibility for conservation of world population

CanadaVery Low

Conservation and management

Populations at the northern edge of this non-migratory species' range are vulnerable to the effects of harsh winters. Because the species is found in areas of high rock cliffs and massive talus debris, it is not subject to the same pressures from urban and agricultural development that affect other species in the Okanagan Valley (Cannings 1995a).


Bird conservation region strategies

Environment and Climate Change Canada and partners have developed Bird Conservation Region Strategies in each of Canada’s Bird Conservation Regions (BCRs). In these strategies, selected species are identified as priorities for one or more of the following reasons:

  • conservation concerns (i.e., species vulnerable due to population size, distribution, population trend, abundance, or threats)
  • stewardship responsibilities (i.e., species that typify the regional avifauna or have a large proportion of their range or population in the sub-region)
  • management concerns (i.e., species that require ongoing management because of their socio-economic importance as game species, or because of their impacts on other species or habitats)
  • other concerns (i.e., species deemed a priority by regional experts for other reasons than those listed above or because they are listed as species at risk or concern at the provincial level)

Select any of the sub-regions below to view the BCR strategy for additional details.

BCRs, marine biogeographic units, and sub-regions in which the species is listed as a priority
RegionSub-region and priority type
Great BasinGreat Basin, sub-region and priority type: Pacific and Yukon Region
Northern RockiesNorthern Rockies, sub-region and priority type: Pacific and Yukon Region