Birds are the creatures of the avian world that have always held a unique appeal for us.
Because they have wings and can fly in the sky, but we can’t, we associate the attributes of freedom, foresight, and courage with them.
Different birds are said to carry different hidden messages and interpretations for us. But are any of these birds the harbingers of good fortune?
Here are 13 birds that can bring good luck to us:
- Doves and Pigeons
This article will talk about all these 13 birds and explore how their spirits are linked to the symbol of good luck.
Endemic to the Americas, the hummingbirds are one of the tiniest birds in the world. The hummingbird family is quite diverse and consists of about 360 different species.
The smallest member of their family, the Bee Hummingbird (Mellisuga helenae), is only 5 centimeters long and weighs less than 2 grams!
Hummingbirds are considered to be lucky birds in several cultures and mythologies around the world.
In ancient times, the sight of these little birdies was considered a good omen, as they were symbolic of fertility and prosperity.
Due to their brilliantly colored plumage and fast flight, the hummingbirds were associated with the traits of growth and beauty.
In fact, many cultures believed that their feathers had some kind of magical power, and killing them was forbidden by their Gods.
Cardinals are small to medium-sized birds that are found in both North and South America. Their family consists of a large number of birds, including tanagers and grosbeaks.
However, the bird we’re talking about here is the Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis).
Colored in the shade of blood, the life force of all living beings, these cardinals are symbolic of vitality. Their appearance is considered a sign of health, well-being, and abundance.
In North America, these birds arrive with the arrival of the spring season, which is why they’re linked with freshness, renewal, and rejuvenation. The very sight of their brilliant red plumage indicates the end of cold, harsh winters to these people.
The robin is a small passerine bird species belonging to the family of flycatchers. These birds are endemic to Europe and have an overall pale brown body, except for a bright orangish patch on their breast.
Due to their rosy breast, the robins are also called “Redbreasts.” This coloration has an interesting story in the Bible.
It says that when Jesus was crucified and was suffering due to nails and thorns on his body, a robin was flying over Him.
Seeing Jesus in so much pain, the robin started trying to remove His crown, made of thorns. In the process, a couple of those thorns stuck on the robin’s chest, smearing it with Jesus’s blood.
It was the holy blood of the Almighty that had strained their breast. And, hence, all robins are red-breasted.
Because of this symbolism, the robins are considered fortunate birds all over England. To see them in the morning is a good omen and signifies that you would have a good day ahead.
Their soft, melodic songs also make them popular among humans. Because we long to hear their sweet songs, seeing them is lucky for us.
Magpies are small, passerine birds of the corvid family. These black and white birds are considered as one of the smartest birds in the world.
In some experiments conducted on the animals, the magpies were one of the rare species that could identify themselves in a mirror, which was the perfect example of their intelligence.
Because of their intelligence, the magpies are symbolic of foresight in several cultures. In some folklore, it was believed that these birds could predict the future.
Because these birds knew what would happen to you today, it was believed that they would only come to you when you were going to have a good day.
Swallows are small passerine birds members of the Hirundinidae family, just like the saw-wings and martins. Their family consists of 90 different species scattered in many parts of the world, including the oceanic islands.
In Christianity, the swallows are symbolic of rebirth, regeneration, and new beginnings, a belief that is still alive in the modern world. In many cultures, these birds are protected by the Gods and deities.
Near the seas, when a robin is seen returning to its nest, the fishermen’s community considers it a good omen. Moreover, they also see it as a sign that they’ll catch plenty of fish the following day.
Another age-old saying popular in Japan says, “The robin only returns to its nest when everything is well.”
The roosters are the male members of the domestic fowl family. They can be distinguished from the female chickens by their long, shiny tail feathers and the bright, pointed feathers on their head and neck.
The Roosters are quite dominant and territorial in nature, which makes them symbolic of courage, strength, bravery, and masculinity, all the basic leadership qualities.
Many chicken farmers kept the roosters specifically for this quality; so that they could protect their chickens from any external threat.
Because the roosters would protect our birds from other animals, they became known as a sign of good luck and abundance with time.
In both the Japanese as well as Irish cultures, the early morning calls of the roosters are welcomed as an omen of good fortune.
The ducks are a large family of stocky waterfowl found in almost every corner of the world. It might come as a surprise to many, but the ducks are one of the first birds domesticated by humans.
From the time we domesticated the ducks, their sight meant either meat or eggs for humans. Most people even started keeping these as pets or rearing them for their eggs.
Therefore, in the farm-based communities, these birds were a source of their livelihoods and were, thus, fortunate for them.
Another century-old belief associated with the ducks is that if you see these birds flying in the sky, a large amount of money will soon come your way.
The cranes are a family of large, long-necked wading birds that have fifteen different species divided into two genera.
These birds have a universal symbolism of grace and beauty, which is derived from their appearance.
Due to their loud, trumpeting calls, several Native American tribes saw the cranes as great orators.
In fact, the mountain peak in Colorado is named “Ziltahjini Peak” after the “standing cranes” in their regional language. Similarly, Watula Creek was also named after the Sandhill Cranes (Antigone canadensis).
In the Japanese culture, it was believed that the cranes lived for thousands of years and were, thus, symbolic of longevity.
These symbols, combined with their quality of mating for life, made the cranes symbolize love, longevity, and good fortune.
Just like the cranes, the storks are also large wading birds with mostly white plumage. However, these birds have a stockier body than the cranes and are heavier in weight.
The most popular imagery attached to the storks is of them carrying babies. But do you know how this saying came into existence? It finds its roots in a Greek legend about Hera, the queen of all Greek Gods.
In the story, Hera turns one of her rival queens into a stork as revenge for a past incident between the two.
The queen that has turned into a stork now becomes furious at Hera and starts planning her own revenge. She ultimately stole one of Hera’s sons.
While the storks do not have a positive symbolism in the story, their baby-carrying attribute soon made them symbolize fertility and prosperity. It was also because the storks were fertile birds that always had a nest full of baby birds.
In some cultures, these large, elegant birds are also seen as symbols of spiritual awakening and transformations in life.
Lastly, in some parts of the world, it is believed that if a couple of storks build their nest on the top of your roof, it is a good omen and symbolizes growth and new opportunities.
The peacocks are a peafowl species that can barely fly due to their beautiful feathers’ heavyweight. And these feathers make them symbolic of beauty, both inner and outer.
In Christianity, the peacocks are symbolic of rebirth and regeneration because they shed their beautiful feathers each year, only to regrow them afterward.
The Buddhists considered these birds to be so pious that if a person who had committed a sin saw a peacock afterward, Lord Buddha would forgive them.
Lastly, in Hinduism, peacocks are the symbol of Goddess Lakshmi, the deity of good fortune and abundance. Lakshmi is also the wife of God Vishnu.
Peacock feather symbolism
Peacocks are such special birds that even their feathers have a unique symbolism.
These feathers, which are shaped roughly in the shape of an eye and have different shades of blue, are universally accepted as the symbol of good fortune.
In fact, Krishna, the popular Hindu God who was behind the lessons of the Bhagavad Gita, also uses a peacock feather to adorn his crown and flute.
A modern-day belief associated with these feathers is that if you stick one to the walls of your house, it will keep all kinds of flies and insects away.
Owls are a species of bird of prey that might appear less deadly than the other raptors but are surprisingly swift and violent.
Owls are nocturnal birds, and their feathers are adapted to silent flight, which is how they have an element of surprise over their prey.
Because the necks of these birds can rotate up to 270 degrees, they always know what’s happening in their surroundings. In the world of symbolism, these birds are said to have a gift for foresight and wisdom.
In some cultures, people consider owls to be sacred. They believe that owls can protect them against evils since these birds can see perfectly in the darkness.
In fact, it is also said that if you dream of an owl, it will reflect the arrival of wealth and good fortune in your waking life.
The woodpeckers belong to the Picidae family, consisting of sapsuckers, wrynecks, and piculets. There are 180 different woodpecker species in the world, and all of them vary greatly in size.
However, these birds’ one attribute that brings them all together is their peculiar habit of pecking on wood.
Regardless of their nativity or diet, all woodpecker species enjoy pecking on dry or decaying wood a great deal.
In some regions, their pecking sound is associated with our heartbeats, which is how these birds are symbolic of vitality and energy.
The Native Americans associate the woodpeckers with Nature and greenery. Even the Celts believe that the spirits of woodpeckers have the element of Earth.
In Greek mythology, the woodpeckers are associated with Ares, the deity of war and battle, whereas in Roman mythology, they’re symbolic of Mars, the God of energy.
In several cultures, the sight of a woodpecker pecking on your tree is a good omen and indicates that you will soon win money from someone.
Doves and Pigeons
Before we begin to talk about the symbolism of doves and pigeons, it is important to note that both these birds belong to the same family.
In fact, all pigeons that we see flying around are the successors of an extinct dove species, the Rock Doves (Columba livia).
Because of this, in the world of symbolism and spiritualism, these birds often have an interchangeable interpretation.
Due to the association of the doves with love and romance, these birds are considered a symbol of love, faithfulness, and commitment.
In many cultures, seeing a pair of doves is a sign of a union of the lovers, i.e., marriage and engagement. You might often spot their pictures on romantic greeting cards or wedding invitations.
During ancient times, doves were considered so pious that our ancestors used them as sacrificial birds for their deities. Due to this purity and innocence, the doves or pigeons are considered to be lucky birds.
In this article, we have learned about the birds known as the harbingers of good luck in different cultures and mythologies.
We agree that all individual species are entitled to their unique interpretations. However, the similarity in all the birds mentioned above (of Nature or symbolism) that brings them together is the symbolism of good fortune.