Keywords and characteristics for Catbird Animal Spirit include adaptability, brilliant insights, change, cleverness, communication, curiosity, home-oriented, humility (demureness), impersonation, intelligence, journeying, meditation, perspective, sacred voice, thoughtfulness, watchfulness, and welcoming.
Gray Catbirds are common, and their populations have been stable from 1966 to 2019, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. Partners in Flight estimates a global breeding population of 29 million and rates them 8 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score, indicating a species of low conservation concern.
Gray catbirds are important predators of insects, and may be especially important at controlling infestations of gypsy moth larvae. They also provide food for their predators. They are hosts for a number of body parasites, including lice, hippoboscid flies and ticks.
Catbirds are a pleasure for most people–they are easily tamed, their song is pleasing, and they don’t have many bad habits. But they do have a lot of enemies–hawks, jays and crows, grackles, squirrels, raccoons, foxes, and snakes, to name just a few.
Catbirds are particularly aggressive backyard birds. In fact, their name gives away a little about their behavior. Catbirds hide in shrubbery and make cat-like noises to warn off predators and other birds.
In many ancient cultures, the symbolism of the woodpecker is associated with wishes, luck, prosperity, and spiritual healing. Other cultures consider the woodpecker to represent hard work, perseverance, strength, and determination. Woodpeckers are also among the most intelligent and smartest birds in the world.
They indulge in ants, caterpillars, beetles, grasshoppers and moths. And you might spot gray catbirds feasting on the grape jelly you put out for orioles. They also like berries, so consider planting berry trees and bushes such as dogwood, winterberry and American beautyberry to attract them to your backyard.
Male and female catbirds may look alike, but a number of physical and behavioral differences set them apart. A study by SMBC scientist Brandt Ryder found that large body size is a feature that appears to factor into females’ mating preferences.
Because of this, a catbird encounter may be an omen that signifies the presence of dishonesty in one’s life. If a catbird encounter has impacted you, keep an eye out for individuals or relationships in which a person seems to have two voices; one may be a deception.
Gray Catbirds get their common name from their distinctive mewing call, which can sound like a cat’s meow to some ears. It’s the most well-known out of the species’ three observed calls, often used while courting mates or defending their territories.
Like its relatives, the Gray Catbird mimics a variety of sounds, but this bird is best known for the cat-like mewing calls that give the species its common name.
Scare them away, if you can. Tie long pieces of aluminum foil to tree branches or hang red metallic tinsel in the trees. Bright, shining objects flash when the sun strikes them; these flashes frighten most species of birds, as they resemble fire.
Diet. Mostly insects and berries. Especially in early summer, eats many beetles, ants, caterpillars, grasshoppers, crickets, true bugs, and other insects, as well as spiders and millipedes. Nestlings are fed almost entirely on insects.
They can even become a pest and destroy crops. I like to put out raisins, catbirds really, really love soaked raisins, but most any kind of fruit will do. That said, in the summer, the young nestlings are fed almost entirely on insects (Audubon.com), so those raisins are most likely adult fare.
Tracking data has shown that catbird populations from the midwest and western United States travel to the southern coast of the United States and to Mexico. The gray catbirds’ winter habitats are very similar to the habitats where they spend their summers.
Gray catbirds are diurnal birds, though they migrate at night. During the day they spend most of their time feeding, gleaning insects from the ground and off vegetation, or foraging in treetops. During the breeding season and winter, mating pairs are territorial and males defend a small area around their nest.
Northern Mockingbirds are larger than Gray Catbirds with a paler belly. They also have 2 white wingbars, which Gray Catbirds do not have.
Different Native American tribes interpret butterflies in their own way, but generally, they’re thought to represent change and transformation, comfort, hope, and positivity. While some believed ancestors communicated through butterflies, others took the presence of these creatures as a joyous or hopeful sign.
Wood-pecking birds feed on larvae, ants, and other insects in wood. Once a wood-pecking bird creates an opening in your home they use their long tongues to catch and feed on insects. If you have birds pecking on your home, it is likely you have a dry rot infestation that is a food source for insects.
Kenn and Kimberly: Woodpeckers use drumming as a form of communication. Hard surfaces like windows, tin roofs, the eaves of your house, or aluminum siding provide great amplification, so they often attract these feathered percussionists.
Catbird’s use different tones and notes in their songs to communicate their presence, lay claim to their territory, and attract mates.
Females sing infrequently, and when they do, their songs are sung more quietly.
The female lays 2 to 6 dark blue-green eggs that will be incubated by the female only. Incubation last about 12 to 14 days. The young will leave the nest within 10 to 13 days after hatching and both adults will continue to feed up to 12 days. Nest are not used for second brood or from year to year.
She’ll toss her own eggs out of the nest after she lays them, while continuing to incubate the cowbird egg. Clearly this is bad news for the catbird, but it’s such a rare occurrence that it shouldn’t take away from the Gray Catbird’s status as a stellar nest defender.
Gray Catbirds eat insects and berries, which is why they enjoyed the hedgerow. The native shrubs are host plants for hundreds of kinds of moths and butterflies; their caterpillars are an important bird food, especially for baby birds. Many of the shrubs also produce berries.