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Do You Know What Seeing A Red Bird Means? Symbolism & Hidden Meanings

Red bird meaning

Red is a real eye-catching color. For whatever reason, we see red and it’s hard to look away! Predators probably have a tough time looking away too. Maybe that’s why there are so few species of red birds?

Yes, we do see bits of red or some reddish colors on woodpeckers, Pine Grosbeaks, House Finches, and some other birds. However, entirely red birds are the exception. That’s not to say they are rare. The most famous red bird of all, the Northern Cardinal, is also one of the most common bird species.

It’s always special to see a cardinal and if you feel joy at seeing one, you’re not alone! This and other red birds have acted as important symbols of happiness, joy, hope, and rebirth throughout history.

See this article to learn all about the symbolism of red birds.


Meaning & Symbolism

Red birds symbolize a number of positive attributes. Their prominent plumage has long been associated with joy and happiness. Similar to how smiling, happy people tend stand out from the crowd, red birds rank among of the most obvious and beautiful of birds.

When red birds are at the feeder or in a flock, we usually notice them before checking out the sparrows and other less colorful species. Nothing looks like them and is why they have also become associated with major life transformations.

However, most of all, red birds are associated with love, romance, and passion. Red has always been strongly connected to these powerful aspects of life. Red birds remind us to nurture our relationships and appreciate our profoundly good fortune to have people we love and be loved in return.


What does it mean when you see a red bird?

Seeing a red bird can mean all sorts of things. To the birdwatcher, seeing red birds can simply be just that. They were looking for birds and managed to focus on a cardinal, Summer Tanager, or maybe even a Red Crossbill.

However, if red birds visit us or we look for meaning in our bird sightings, seeing a red bird becomes much more profound. Seeing a bird like a bright red male cardinal can remind us of the importance of feeling joy and love.

red birds symbolize many different things

Red birds have cheery and vibrant personalities, but they symbolize many different things.

It can also be a reminder to appreciate our loved ones, or even make major changes in our lives. For many people, seeing red birds can also take on spiritual significance. That red bird in the garden could be a loved one who has passed on, or maybe even a reminder that angels are near!

Read What Seeing a Cardinal Means

Spiritual Meaning

Red birds have powerful spiritual meanings and seeing them can have major implications. Most importantly, when people see cardinals and other beautiful red birds, they can represent deceased loved ones. Many people who were mourning recently passed spouses, parents, children, and friends have mentioned how they were subsequently visited by cardinals.

While they were thinking of their loved one, a cardinal started visiting their backyard on a daily basis, one came in close and sang, or a cardinal even perched nearby and accompanied them.

They took these sightings to be visits from loved ones or at least reminders that their dear ones were watching over them.

Even if such cardinal sightings are not viewed as actual visits from the spiritual realm, they can at least remind us of the treasured love shared with passed on loved ones.

Along similar lines, many folks also believe that cardinals are associated with angels. Hearing or seeing a cardinal or other red bird means that angels are nearby, always taking care of and watching over us. Given the sheer beauty of a singing cardinal, it seems feasible an angel could be close by!

Red birds are also believed to be messengers from the spiritual realm that remind us to have hope, determination, and stay true to ourselves.



Red birds also symbolize rebirth. In this case, rebirth means growth and transformation. When we see a cardinal, or other bird with red plumage, it can remind us of the importance to never stop learning and growing to be a better person.

Northern Cardinal

Red birds are often seen as symbols of rebirth and renewal.

We see a beautiful bright red bird and the colors are so eye-catching, it’s like seeing something new, every single time. I know I can’t help but be impressed with every cardinal I see! They might be common, but they simply look incredible.

Keep reading: What does it mean when a bird visits you?

In that respect, they can also remind us that it’s never too late to take a step back, assess our lives, and transform it.



Red birds are a powerful symbol of renewal. Their bright colors remind us of the bold steps we may need to take to transform our lives. Such steps won’t be easy and may require a complete overhaul of the way we live. However, as tough as those changes may be, there’s a good chance the end result will translate to a fresh start and a straighter road to happiness.

In that respect, red birds also remind us of that beautiful treasure that comes with renewal. In this case, the rubies and sapphires take the form of a new life that brings joy and a fantastic array of associated happy possibilities.



Red birds have often been associated with love. Cultures as varied as Native Americans, ancient Greeks, and other peoples have viewed red birds as a symbol of passion, love, and joy. This symbolism stems from associating the color red with passion, happiness, and the beautiful vibrant feelings we have when we love someone.

Red birds often symbolize love

Cardinals are most commonly seen red birds, and looking at their red plumage, why wouldn’t you associate them with love?

Viewing red bird as a symbol for love isn’t too surprising. After all, in modern times, shades of scarlet and crimson are often associated with love and relationships. As for red birds, they also symbolize love because one of the most common, the Northern Cardinal, typically mates for life.


Red Bird Tattoo Meaning

Red bird tattoos are an artistic way to represent love, passion, and joy. Get a high-quality tattoo of a Northern Cardinal, Summer Tanager, or other bright red bird, and you’ll be showing you believe in and encompass these positive attributes.

Read more: Bird Tattoo Meanings & Ideas

Tattoos of red birds are also a perfect way to show that you are a bird lover. When people ask about your beautiful cardinal tattoo, you can answer that you welcome these beautiful passionate birds to your garden. You might mention that you feed them and their presence reminds you to yearn to be joyful and to not be afraid to live life to the fullest.

Get a tattoo of a Summer Tanager and you can tell folks that yes, this striking bird is real! You can also tell them that these fantastic migrant birds remind you to be determined to stay true to your beliefs and way of life.


Red Bird Meaning – Frequently Asked Questions

What does it mean to see a red bird?

Seeing a red bird can mean a visit from a passed loved one, and a reminder that angels are near.

Are red birds a good omen?

Yes, red birds are a good omen. They represent passion and the freedom to choose what’s best for you.

Is a red bird an angel?

For some people, yes, a red bird represents a visit from an angel.

Do red birds symbolize new beginnings?

Yes, red birds can symbolize new beginnings. They can be a sign of rebirth and renewal.

About the Author

Patrick O'Donnell

Patrick O'Donnell has been focused on all things avian since the age of 7. Since then, he has helped with ornithological field work in the USA and Peru, and has guided many birding tours, especially in Costa Rica. He develops birding apps for BirdingFieldGuides and loves to write about birds, especially in his adopted country of Costa Rica.

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