Have you ever heard a catbird’s call? If you have but didn’t see where it came from, you might have thought you heard a cat in the backyard bush. These birds got the name catbird because the catbird’s vocalizations sound like a cat meowing. But catbirds are not just birds with an interesting calling sound.
These birds that are native to North America can also be messengers sent to guide you on your life path. In this article, you will learn about catbird symbolism, the meaning of encountering them in life or dreams, and what it means to have a catbird as your spirit, totem, or power animal.
Interesting facts about catbirds
To better understand why certain symbols and omens are attached to catbirds, we need to first understand the catbird’s abilities and characteristics.
The species of catbirds belong to the Mimidae family of birds together with mockingbirds, tremblers, and thrashers. As well as North America, they are found in Central America, the Caribbean, Ethiopia, New Guinea, and Australia. Unlike their cousins that sing from exposed perches, catbirds usually sing from cover.
When these little birds are calling, they make cat-like sounds. However, they can sing beautifully, too, and often mimic other birds. It doesn’t repeat itself and sings each phrase of a song only once. In contrast, mockingbirds and thrashers will repeat the same phrase more than once.
What makes catbirds so interesting is that they can make a wide range of sounds because both sides of their syrinx can work independently. They can chatter, squeak, whistle and meow.
Because they prefer to live in dense thickets, catbirds are difficult to spot. You can identify a grey catbird from its greyish color, off-white forehead, and chestnut belly. The males and females look the same. To find out more about the species, we recommend this article from 10000 Birds.
Because of their unique qualities, many cultures have attached symbolic meanings to catbirds:
In Native American tribes, catbirds as totem animals are associated with a range of meanings and qualities. Because catbirds are known for their catlike sounds and the ability to mimic other birds, catbirds are often seen as a reminder to use our voices and share our thoughts with others.
In some Native American traditions, catbirds are spirit messengers or bearers of good news. For example, in the Hopi legend “Spider Grandmother”, the catbird brings news which causes a great celebration.
In the Celtic culture, catbird folklore associates them with the goddess Brigid, the goddess of healing, fire, and poetry. She was said to favor catbirds out of all the animals.
The Celts also believed that people from a supernaturally gifted race, the Tuatha de Danann, could transform into animals, including catbirds.
Catbird Christianity symbolism comes from the Bible. They are described as creatures that can mimic cats in the book of Isiah. The book of Revelations also mentions catbirds as the creatures that will be present in the ultimate battle between good and evil.
The ancient Greeks associated catbirds with the goddess Artemis who was the goddess of animals, nature, and hunting. Like Brigid, the Celtic goddess, catbirds were said to be Artemis’s favorite animals, too.
You can read about the cultural symbolisms in more depth here.
But it is not only traditional meanings that make catbirds significant. Many people believe spirits are sending us messages through interactions with catbirds. Here are some examples of what they could be telling us:
Use your resourcefulness
Catbirds are perceptive and clever birds. Sometimes they have been accused of being tricksters because of their cunning cleverness. If you have a decision to make or a problem to solve, the bird could be telling you to use your resourcefulness and intelligence to move forward.
Communicate with others
Catbirds are effective communicators. They can mimic other birds, sound like cats and perform songs up to ten minutes long. Seeing a catbird could be a spirit guide telling you not to hide your voice, but to let others know your thoughts and opinions. Use your voice to improve your position in life because you are here for a purpose.
Listen to your inner knowledge
Catbirds are insightful, and an encounter could be a reminder to listen to your inner wisdom. You have the knowledge to make the right decisions. The catbird can be here to remind you that your intuition is better than the advice that others will give you. Yes, you can listen to their advice, but you should trust your brilliant insights.
There might be dishonesty in your life
Not all encounters with catbirds are necessarily positive. They can come with a warning, too. Because catbirds can use their vocal organs to produce two voices simultaneously, an encounter might be an omen of dishonesty around you.
For more examples of catbird messages, click here.
Catbirds can deliver messages in our dreams, too:
Catbird Dream Interpretations
When you are interpreting your dreams, you need to think about your life situation and what the bird, or birds, was doing in the dream because the context is important.
A catbird may suggest to the dreamer that they are trying to be someone or something who is not true to themselves. It could be a message to be your authentic self.
Is the catbird mewing or singing in your dream? If so, it shows that you are grateful for your blessings and can appreciate who you are. If the bird sings, it is a sign that you wish to be heard by those around you.
Because catbirds prefer to live in thickets, they are out of their comfort zone on high perches. So if you dream of one sitting high in a tree, it might be telling you to get out of your comfort zone.
Catbirds are great at mimicry and if it is doing an impersonation of you in the dream, it could be a warning that someone close to you is trying to harm you. It is telling you to watch out for deception.
For more dream meanings, visit Spirit Animal Dreams.
Catbirds can also enter our lives as spirit, totem, or power animals:
Catbird spirit animal
Because catbirds are great communicators, they often appear when we are learning a new method of communication, such as different languages. They are also drawn to people who work with words such as writers, speakers, and singers. However, if you use your voice to gossip or for verbal manipulation, they will withdraw their guidance.
A catbird spirit animal may be a messenger reminding you to be curious and explore new things. To meet new people in new environments. They can also help you have a stronger presence when meeting people.
Catbird totem animal
Your totem animal is with you from birth and throughout your entire life. People who have a catbird birth totem are interested in increasing their self-knowledge and awareness of others. They can have a tendency to talk about themselves, but it is not because of their ego or because they are boasting. In a conversation, they listen well to the other side of the conversation and give alternative viewpoints.
If you wish to strengthen your catbird totem energies, find your mantra or a soul song. This could be the key to unlocking personal gifts and building your self-esteem. You might find it through mediation, music, writing, or in a dream.
Catbird power animal
You might want to call on the spirit of a catbird when you are trying to expand your understanding of words or to communicate something difficult. The catbird power animal can support you in finding new ways to express yourself. You can call upon the spirit when you are learning something by imitation or a hands-on experience.
You can petition catbird power animals to help you deal with misleading information and gossip. Because it has trickster-like abilities, it can help you shift through false information. This will protect you from the negativity that comes from spreading mistruths.
For more information on catbird spirit, totem, and power animals, visit What Dream Means.
Because catbirds hide in thickets and are not easy to see, when you spot one, it is likely for a reason. They can appear to us when we need guidance on communicating our thoughts or when we are in an education process.
They might have been sent to us to prompt us to step outside our comfort zone and to remind us to be inquisitive about the world. Catbirds can also come with a warning when there is someone dishonest in our lives.
So next time you see a catbird, pay attention to what it is doing. It might well be here to deliver you an important message.
We hope to have answered your questions about catbirds. If there is something more you wish to know, ask us in the comments section.