Thursday, 16 July 2009

Spirit Animal – Cedar Waxwing


  Cedar Waxwing – picture from

Over the past two weeks, when the dogs and I walk in the woods, one or two cedar waxwings fly along with us and sing a song of trills and whistles.  Since they are trying very hard to get my attention, I spent some time finding out about the bird.

First, the birds are migratory, and arrive in Calgary in the early spring, any time in March.  They come in flocks of hundreds, and several flocks visit our back yard, and sit on our mountain ash, eating berries.  Cedar Waxwing’s diet is pretty much always fruit and berries (it loves the sweetness of life) except at breeding time, when it will eat insects as well.  In fact, the berries that it eats may affect the coloring of the feathers, making the light red/orange a much more vibrant red, and changing the yellow color to a more orangey-red hue. 

Second, while their favorite habitat is woodland with access to lots of berries, the Waxwing loves to be near open, running water, such as a stream, creek, or river.  Waxwing needs lots of water to help process its sugar rich diet. 

Third, Waxwings mate in early summer, coming together as a pair only for the season.  They make their vows as a couple by passing flower petals or some food back and forth.  They may have two nests through the summer as the eggs hatch within two weeks, and the young leave the nest after eighteen days.  Both parents feed the young.

Waxwing teaches lessons around going beyond the physical demands of the body (food and shelter needs found in the base chakra) and speaks to the joy of belonging, for they belong in flocks and pairs (which is what the second and third chakras, orange and yellow in color are about), and Waxwing sings of the sweetness of life.  Its love of running water is about letting all emotions run off your body.  Feel them to the utmost and then let them go.  It is stuck emotions that cause pain and illness, for many people.  Waxwing’s mask is a reminder that sometimes all that other see is the mask that they perceive.  And, for many of us, our truth is hidden, even from ourselves. 

Wishing you days of light and laughter,     See our upcoming new moon meditation on July 22


Deborah said...

I just saw a 'museum' of waxwings come through Calgary the other day-hundreds of birds-heading south.What a spectacular sight. I was able to obtain pictures & video. Thanks for the info!

Christie Lawler said...

I went to the river with these emotions of sadness I didn't want to feel .As I sat by the river This bird was desperately fighting for it's life in the river's edge, The river is so dirty but i had to go in and get him. I felt like I was watching my child drowning . He let me pick him up , I didn't know what to do with him or why he couldn't get out of the water. I could feel his heart rate beating fast , I knew he was scared too of me. So I held him in my hand ran my finger down his head and back for about an hour, then I put him on the ground as he was pooping in my hand. As time went on he seemed to perk up .I tried to pick him back up and he flew to the nearest bush. I watched for 2 more hours as he sat in the low bush . He regained himself and started his high whistle and flew to higher ground. I was so relieved he would be ok. Now I read this and I am so blessed God takes care of me too. <3

Judith Hirst said...

Hi Christie,
Thanks for sharing this! It is a great story of an animal finding a physical way to bond with you. If you need to, you can call on the Waxwing for help with a problem or issue... or whatever.

LHL said...

Are these birds common in Southern California?

Therese Dorer said...

thank you I saw two this morning by the river and felt they were a sign for me

Brooke said...

I have 2 in my back yard and when i chose the power animal card this morning one of them started singing like he was really trying to get my attention. I absolutely love these birds. This is the 2nd summer they have chosen to visit my yard. :) Thank you so much for your info Judy.

Msfig said...

Yes, they are in Southern California LHL
I live in the rural foothills of So Cal.
I have a flock of many Cedar Waxwing over 10 in my tree especially when I use my sprinkler which is like a fountain. They love it! They're so cool! Yes, very social. (which I'm not, hummm?)
I look at this visit as Waxwing Medicine to pay attention to, :)

Anderson Linaeyev said...

This morning, walking down the road, saw hundreds of waxwings in an apple tree picking at the old fruit. They were singing and playing. Reminded me of two baby waxwings I rescued many years ago from children who had knocked them from their nest, destroying their nest and running them into the ground. They could not fly yet...I managed to save them, and released them to their mother, who came to get them when they were well. They came back to my yard for several years and recognized me. Were very friendly. That is what I found amazing- that they connected.

Alex said...

I love these birds and haven't seen them since I was a kid ! (80's!)
I just went for a walk outside my door in Collingwood, ON. and heard them - what a memory - I knew they were around - about 15-20 in a tree ! Beautiful birds and I'm going to hopefully feed them this year if I can.

Anonymous said...

I just had a waxwing fly into my house through the open back door. Of course it skittered about iin my house as it tried to find his way out. Many times he'd perch on my counters or sat on the wreath over my fireplace; until oddly he finally landed on the floor. I was able to put a large bucket gently covering him and slid the rug out the door to give him freedom. I believe strongly in synchronicity and I don't think it was coincidence that this bird visited me today. I was sweeping my floors as I cried from built up pain due to relationship stress that came to a head that morning, just an hour before. Thank you for this wonderful info about this graceful messenger