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Updated on June 3, 2011

Divining With BIRDS

In Ancient Greek and Roman augury, the study of the movements of wild birds was taken very seriously as a method of predicting future events and the best courses of action to take.

In fact, Crow divination is still practised in parts of India.

We as humans can also use this knowledge, but how can the movements and behaviours of birds (and animals) relate to our personal lives? More importantly, how can they alert us to matters not accessible to our conscious mind or predictable using the evidence currently available?

One way is to interpret the significance of different movements made by certain creatures at a particular time, using the set meanings that have been given to the movements and proved reliable over the centuries. The meanings will act as a basic template or framework, which will indicate particular areas of our life that need attention or about which we have doubts or unanswered questions.

Our unconscious minds can then flesh out and adapt this template with knowledge that is not accessible to the conscious mind, using symbols that are triggered within us by the divinatory process we are undertaking. This will then become a valuable, but relatively inaccessible store of knowledge.

This is based upon the premise (as expressed by the psychotherapist Carl Jung) that no action is accidental or random. Therefore, using psychokinesis or ‘mind power’, we can somehow influence where the birds are focusing on, will fly or land, simply by concentrating on them. This basic information can give us clues about the best possible path to follow or decision to be made.

Even if you do not believe such psychic influence is possible over a particular aspect of nature, you can still use bird divination as a way of focusing your thoughts and accessing hidden wisdom that we all possess to find the correct course. Put another way, the questioner’s unconscious wisdom already knows the correct course of action, but is unable to convey this to the conscious mind except through an outward sign.

Observing bird flight is only the first part of the process, and the experience opens a doorway to the seeker’s deeper wisdom that has been awakened by focusing on the experience and suspending logic for just a few moments. It is like switching from the left logical side of the brain, to the more intuitive area on the right. Either during or after the event, images or words may appear in your mind, perhaps while you are walking, relaxing or during a dream at night. So what appears to be a basic ‘fortune-telling’ message is expanded in the seekers’ mind, or explained in the dream or on the daydreaming plane.

The more you learn about birds and the way they behave, the more easily you can combine natural observation with your intuitive (or prophetic) powers/talents. In this way, if a bird or flock of birds acts strangely, then you may be able to deduce that they ‘know’ something that you do not about changes in the weather or an impeding natural event.

Farmers and those who live and work closely with the land are often gifted in reading animal patterns, and abide by their messages.

Bird augury works on the principle that birds are closer to nature than humans and therefore more sensitive to invisible energies. Their physical actions express approaching prevailing energy – such as earthquakes – before even the most psychic human is aware of it. Variables include the kinds of birds – assuming there is normal a variety in your garden or wherever you are working – their call or song, the size of the group, how and where they fly and land at the moment you ask your question and whether this differs from the way you would normally act.

In all forms of divination, it is the feelings and impressions you experience deep inside in response to an external omen that is the key to gaining knowledge.

Spontaneous bird appearances can also have meaning. In the official and generalised interpretations of bird augury through the ages, an owl tapping on the window is interpreted as foretelling the death of an emperor, or at least a difficult period for the residents of the house. But dig deeper; this unusual phenomenon (tapping on your window) may be pointing out to you that the answer to your problem is very close if you just open your eyes; an owl tapping suggests your should ask someone wise – and close to you – for help and guidance.

You can practice bird divination with absolutely any bird you see anywhere. From the beginning, it is quite important to build up your connection with the birds with which you will be working most often. These could be pigeons and starlings in a town square, sparrows in the garden, cockatoos in the bush, seabirds on the shore or birds on an urban playing field … anywhere.

If possible, set up a garden bird feeder or two to encourage local birds to visit. Feed the birds regularly in your chosen place and they will know where to come for a free feed. Sit and observe them in the early mornings and evenings. Watch them in the midday sun. In time, you will know if their behaviour is usual or unusual as you become more accustomed to them.

Flocks of pigeons are especially effective for divination as they are often composed of birds of many different shades and they are constantly landing and fluttering off. This will give you a readily available, large selection of birds on which you can base your predictions.

Watch birds in flight through half-closed eyes, focusing on the patterns of silver and blue made by their collective energy fields or auras. In this way you can learn to merge with the essence of the birds and so be able to obtain psychic as well as physical impressions more easily. A pair of good binoculars is essential equipment so that you can continue to monitor the birds in the sky after they have flown away.


Where there are more than one species of bird present, or differently coloured birds within the species (males and females often differ dramatically) a predominance of lighter birds landing and remaining on the ground indicates that it would be beneficial to take immediate action. Darker ones, however, suggest delay.

If you make a decision, the arrival or movement of a light-coloured bird would tell you to act. A darker one would tell you to wait.


Birds flying in the right-hand area of the sky as you are standing or sitting indicates a smooth passage in any venture and that confident action should be taken. Birds flying on the left indicates delays and perhaps suggest waiting or remaining silent for the time being.

Birds flying straight towards the questioner indicates that happier times are coming. Those flying away, especially if there is no apparent reason for them suddenly taking flight, suggests that the next few days are a time for tact and caution, and for making plans rather than embarking on new ventures.


The higher the flight of the bird (or birds), the more favourable will be the omen. If a bird flies directly upwards, then the venture should achieve swift success with little effort required.

If the flight is horizontal or veers up and down with the bird landing and flying off, then landing again, you may need to persevere and not be deterred by initial obstacles.


If a bird suddenly changes direction, there may be sudden changes of heart or inconsistency from those close to you. It may even imply that your own doubts that need to be examine.

Getting to know the birds around you and studying their behaviour will assist you in ‘opening up’ your intuitive abilities, enabling you to tap into the energies of the Universe. Practicing bird augury is a fascinating doorway into predicting personal life issues as well as impeding natural Earth events and disasters.

Take heed of the messages from the birds.




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      5 years ago

      Hi, just read your article and I do have a couple of questions I am sure you can answer. What does it mean if you see or hear a flock of birds after dark in a treeless area where you have never in the past seen or heard them? Also, if a bird flies across the road in front of your vehicle, what does that mean?


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