Barred Owl

Meaning, Medicine & Magic

 

Owl spirit animal symbolizes wisdom, intuition, insight, the messenger, mystery, freedom, secrets, stealth, and vision.

Owl enjoys the mysteries of life and has an appreciation for life’s magic.

Owl asks you to examine things from the perspective of how they truly are, in order to see things that are usually hidden from view, such as other’s motives.

Using Owl-vision allows you to extract secrets beyond the veil of illusion in order to access knowledge and wisdom. Trust your instincts about people.

During confusing and changing times, Owl can help you to make confident decisions that let you step away from situations that no longer serve you.

Lessons In Wild Play

 

Nature is a master teacher. Research your animal’s habits in the wild and try playing & acting as it. How could this help shift your experiences?

 

 

All Owls:

  • They rely on their flexible necks in order to observe their world. Keeping your neck stretched and relaxed will help open you up to greater perceptions.
  • Like other birds of prey, Owls have a third eyelid that helps to clean their eyes. This is a reminder to keep your vision clear and to realize that you already have all the tools you need in order to keep your vision clean, sharp, and focused. What could be fogging your ability to see situations clearly? What could you “clean up” in order to see more clearly? Whatever you’re seeing is more than just wild imagination. Trust it.

 

  • Owls fly silently due to a feathered fringe on the front of their wings. Practice silently going about your business.

Barred Owls:

  • Their eyes are dark brown (they almost appear black), instead of yellow like most Owl’s eyes. This represents your deep connection to the cosmos and to creative potential. You can see far and deep.

 

  • Barred owls like to stand in streams and eat crayfish. Sometimes they eat so many crayfish that the feathers on their bellies turn pink! You have the ability to access things from other realms (spirit, dreams, imagination…) and bring them back to this world, manifesting them in personal transformation that serves the highest good of all.

 

  • The Barred Owl gets its name from the bar-like marks on its feathers. This is a strong symbol of protection, not a jail. Barred Owls know where their personal boundaries lie and they show this to others through a physical expression, radiating out self-respect. Is there a way you could adorn yourself in order to humbly tell others that your space is sacred?

 

  • How do you communicate with others? Barred Owls are the most vocal of all Owls. Their hoot has a laughter-like rhythm to it. Try bringing more humor and silliness into your conversations with others. We could all use a chuckle.

Splash & Dance…

with Water, Color & Spirit

Watch the magic in lightspeed action…

Call on Barred Owl

Invite Barred Owl into your life. Surround, inspire, and remind yourself that your spirit animal guide is with you & within you. Embody the skills of your power animal and share your unique gifts with the world.

Totem Card

barred owl spirit animal symbolism

Save the symbolism on Pinterest

Art Print

barred owl watercolor art print

$25

Dive in Deeper

Spirit Animal Readings

tanya casteel artist painter spirit animal reading shaman

Discover what messages your spirit animal(s) have for you. Through my visual meditations, I can take you on a journey full of wonder and intuitive guidance.

Custom Totem Animal Painting

custom spirit animal painting

I would love to paint your spirit animal for you. What animal is calling to you?

I want to hear about your Barred Owl experiences. What stories or dreams have you had? Please share and join in the conversation below!

77 Comments

  1. Michael Farewell

    Hello, last night I listens to a CD by Dick Sutphen to help me meet my spirit guide. I did this on a whim to help me fall asleep. I ended up dreaming of Owls. Three of the came to visit me. I held them and they sat on my shoulder. I looked into their deep dark get/blue eyes. The owls were friendly and blue/grey in color with huge eyes. Searching the web for the meaning the owls closely look like your drawings of a barred owl. Were these my spirit guides? I guess so. What do I do now? Do you do paintings?

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Hi Michael, Wow that sounds like a meaningful dream! Yes, owl (or more specifically the barred owl) could most definitely be your spirit animal OR just a spirit animal messenger. If owls keep presenting themselves to you regularly in life and in dreams then most likely owl is one of your main spirit animal guides. If not, then owl is bringing you a message for this time in your life. Reading about your dream it sounds like it has a lot to do with vision and your ability to look deeply within yourself and others. Yes, I do paintings. I offer prints and original paintings here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/SpiritAnimalPainting

      Reply
    • Elle

      Yesterday i had cleaned some of my cats catnip to the front porch. I did not sweep it up immediately. I had an odd dream that morn as i awoke. I stood reading an article about dreams by the window next to the front door. A burroughing owl swiftly flew to my doorstep and flew away. I opened the door to see tiny bird feathers. And felt i had put this lil bird in harms way by not cleaning up the catnip.

      Reply
      • Tanya Casteel

        Maybe or maybe not. What I find interesting about this story is the blending of cat and bird energy. It always makes me think of griffins. I love when birds and cats merge together.

        Reply
    • Cassie

      A day after the eclipse, I went outside in desperation for answers. Things had gotten really shaky in a deathly way in my life n for the first time ever I called out genuinely to my spirit guide for a sign. N an owl appeared.. I knew the universe was speaking to me. She came to me twice after I prayed hard to the universe. I know I’m in the middle of my ascension. I feel it in every aspect. I pray that I connect with her. I had just recently been given an owl lamp n some owl glass cups which sparked my sudden love n interest. I knew I had a purpose but I never knew my journey would be this beautiful. About 2 years ago when I was homeless i passed an owl of the same stature on a pole. I do believe it was the same owl, the same spirit thatis visiting me. Maybe my mother who passed when i was 4. Idk but i hope the truth unveils itself so i may learn about myself, my purpose n spread knowledge of the greater good.

      Reply
      • Tanya Casteel

        What a beautiful journey you’re on. The truth is blooming, blossoming, and unfolding all in its own perfect timing for you.

        Reply
  2. Holly

    I dreamt last night of a lone perched barred owl in a sterile white room. I could not see him, until I looked around a wall, tho in my mind’s eye, I could sense he was there. He just sat there, blinking and staring at me. Later, I also saw two fairly young deer in a green field grazing about, very calmly. I have had two other dreams of owls before. They are, I am pretty sure, my spirit animal. In waking life, they used to visit and surround our house, and I would see images of owls all the time. Though my favorites are the Barn and Snowy owls, the Barred keeps making itself known to me…
    Please help me decipher my dream, and thank you!!

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Thanks Holly for sharing your dream! It does sound like owl is working closely with you. The barred owl, in particular, works with vision because the depths of it’s dark eyes. Your dream also seems to speak strongly about vision. Showing you that you don’t need your physical human eyes to “see” things around you. I gather that barred owl is asking you to trust your intuition when it comes to knowing things that can’t be seen or are currently obvious. What are you sensing around the corner? Trust that vision/feeling/knowing. Deer asks us to be more present and alert – fine-tune your observations skills.

      Reply
    • Aaron Walter

      I have many experiences day,night awake with people who witness and even when I go asleep..I have b dreams conciece encounters . I am clarvoyant.the barred owl is one of my animal totems..I need recently found one deceased and wondered what I should do to send his spirit back to the creator?anyway this medicine is strong with me and I will share a dream .. so I was in a dream full color.i noticed a little girl upside down off the ground by about five feet or so.she had owl wings and human hands like an image of an Angel but,she was a little girl ,eight so,she was Tangled in a fence it looked like.i free her and she tumbled to the ground but before she would touch the ground she flipped upright and talently sat on a fresh cut tree round I had as chairs or was ready to be split maybe..I noticed as I sat in front of her that she was a platinum blonde hair,red rosy flusshed cheeks and a purple sweater matching pants and a owl figure on her chest.like what grandma would stich on you in the 1970’s..anyway she rolled out her impressive wings and arms or whatever and opened a bag of gummy worms…I remember I could smell the sweetness of em.and I especially wanted to share a couple of them with her.or rather her share a couple with me..as I reached out to pick a couple from her bag she resisted and pulled away the open bag very swiftly and as any normal child learning a sensitive and rather difficult moral of sharing.. as I wasn’t really happy I recall I sat down on the wood log that was cut into short piece sat on end as chairs.. she me face to face a small fire next us slight dew like drissel but not enough to make you real wet.wellbshe definitely had never shared any gummy worms ever before me and let me Kno it by actions and expression.paused for a moment and gave me a couple..I accepted happily and was pleased by her showing me favor..I believe that more was to come again later but not that time..the girl stood up and extended her wing/arms and flew away.i new I’d see her again.. haven’t yet been babout two years ago in clock time or twelve month American calendar time .it’s all I know for sure anyway..so that’s it.. thanks for your time and attention
      ..

      Reply
      • Tanya Casteel

        I love the connection you have with Owl. Thanks for sharing this vivid dream.

        Reply
  3. Anna

    Hi Tanya,
    Thank you so much for your intuitive interpretation here. Barred Owl called to me this past weekend while I was at the end of a solo hike, sorting love and other detours.

    Reply
  4. Colleen Otterson

    I live in the heart of the city in Atlanta Georgia. My townhouse backs up to some woods. I often see a Barred owl perched on a limb. It will stare at me and observe, and I do the same. My back porch sits high off the ground I am at eye level with the owl. I enjoy seeing it very much. What could it mean I see this owl often. The owl brings me comfort.

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Keep receiving the gift of comfort from owls. They are surely sending that to you. It seems that you (like owls) are keen observers. Try taking these skills to all places of your life. What do you notice in nature, in people, at work, in society? Then ask, what could it mean? And most importantly, how can I be useful with what I see? How can I use my observations to better serve myself and others? Even if you don’t know the answer right away it’s important that you start asking the questions.

      Reply
  5. Flyingirl

    Driving home in the dark tonight I was running one of my fear tapes in my head having decided earlier to step out and take a course later next year with a teacher lthat I’ve been strongly drawn to but have not met in person yet. Turning the corner onto my road home with this loop running through my mind a beautiful barred owl flies out from right side of the road right across the path of my moving vehicle. I hit the brakes to avoid hitting the owl it was that close. I stop and back up to see if I can see it in the woods across the road but no sighting. It snapped me right out of my unconscious mind chatter. This is the 3rd or 4th time I have seen a barred owl in that vacinity, this was the first time at night, in flight, and right in front of me. It was a bit shocking and frightening in that we almost collided, but also rare and awe inspiring. The owl was beautiful and highly visible. I thought it was an omen. I am fond of owls. One night many years ago there were three in the trees right by my house which was really pretty special. I’d love to hear your thoughts and love your barred owl painting!

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Thank you 🙂 It sounds like you have a close connection with owls as they keep appearing for you. Having almost collided with the barred owl is most definitely a “wake up call” from Spirit to help snap you back to more productive thoughts. Keep your owl totem close to your heart and trust in its gentle flight and ability to navigate in the dark (unknown). When you feel afraid know that you have these abilities within you and owls to guide you.

      Reply
      • Flyingirl

        Thank you Tanya!

        Reply
  6. Monica Anderson

    I had a barred owl come visit me twice last Monday and she let me get very close to her. We just stared into eachothers eyes and I got a message “calmness during chaos.” I felt this was a VERY powerful and important interaction for me especially with where I am on my life path right now ?

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Yes absolutely. Eye contact is so powerful — connecting us to soul to soul. What a lovely message/gift.

      Reply
  7. Mat

    A few years back My wife and I were driving home About a quarter mile from our house on the side of the road stood a Barred Owl. I asked her to pull over and I walked up to the Owl. I lowered my arm to his feet and he climbed on. Normally this was a busy road but empty at the time. Either way he wasn’t going to be safe there for long. It was dark, so I decided to walk him to the house where I could see if he was injured. When we got for the house, I places the Owl on a stump to turn the lights on. It took me maybe 30 seconds to do so. I turned back to the Owl and he/she was gone. Neither one of us heard it take flight and did not see it anywhere the ground. After that night we started hearing an Owl in the woods. At our new place we have Screech Owls around us. Ill never forget that day

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Whoa! This story gave me chills. Thanks for sharing! So magical. Strong owl magic runs through you and that land.

      Reply
  8. Debra

    Last night many owls surrounded my house at around 1 a.m. What does that mean?

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Wow, that sounds very powerful. It makes me think of Harry Potter and owls delivering messages, ha. To discover the meaning for you I would think about what has been going on with you in your life during this event. I would also research what phase was the moon in during this event to see if you can draw any further connections. Spirit animals often speak to us in symbols that are not immediately clear to us. Be patient, keep aware, and trust any feelings you get about the possible meaning for you.

      Reply
  9. Victoria Moore

    I have had some strange things going on this last week and when I try to explain my thoughts and feelings, my husband just laughs so I came across your postings and I am so thankful. For the last year and a half we have had 2 owls that stay in between our house and our neighbor across the streets house. We always would hear them at night occasionally. Some months would go by without noise. I’ve seen them at night only a handful of times. Within this year I have been diagnosed with an immune deficiency, asthma and had a hysterectomy.Now my gallbladder is needing to be taken out and the doctor found small nodules in my lungs but not too concerning. I haven’t felt well the last mo th and I’m not recovering that good from the hysterectomy which also led to pneumonia. I’m a mess. My immunologist is talking about me neding to do immunoglobulin transfusions weekly because my body is not responding to any boosters they give me. Anyway, so 4 days ago I dropped my kids off at school and when I got home I hear crows cawing and making a loud commotion, squirrels start going crazy and other birds too. It took a few minutes for me to finally see what the issue was but they were right outside my patio window. At first I didn’t see anything except the crows flew off when I came out and the other birds did too. It was 930am. The clouds were moving fast and I looked up one last time and 2 owls were right above my head staring at me. At first I was creeped out. I thought it was odd. They were right where the group of crows were. But I grabbed my camera and took some pics. I went inside and they let out 3 hoots. Maybe a few minutes later I went back out and 3 turkey vultures were flying around my yard. I wasn’t smelling any dead animals so I thought it was odd too. One vulture perched itself on my neighors tree limb that is low to the groud and watched me. The other 2 kept soaring in circles. This continued all day. The owls never left and the vultures stayed. However, no matter where I went I have turkey vultures flying high in the sky. I always see 3. I feel like they are following me. I am driving and they are there. When I pull into my destination, they are there. My husband just says there are just dead animals everywhere. The only time there was more than 3 was yesterday when I got to my destination, 3 were constantly there when I was driving but when I went to get back into my car to leave to come home, a flock of atleast 10 had shown up. I feel spooked. I haven’t seen the owls again however, everytime I step outside in the daytime I hear only 1 hoot. I am certain that there is some kind of meaning to this.

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      This a quite a unique story, thanks for sharing. Owls showing up to stare at you in the daylight and vultures showing up in 3s, yes I would say that sounds significant. Raven is my main spirit animal and crows often show up for me to get my attention, so I liked hearing that the crows started cawing and making a commotion. You might also be interested in checking out my vulture page: http://www.tanyacasteel.com/project/vulture/ for more insights (they are great at purifying). And I’d be curious to see the photos you took of the owls if you feel like sharing: spiritanimals@tanyacasteel.com . It’s hard to say what the exact meaning is for you at this time, but the birds are definitely communicating with you. Keep watching and try talking back to them. It sounds like owls have been watching you for a while. They could very well be bringing you comfort and healing as they can feel the situation you’re in. I wish you the deepest blessing with your healing journey.

      Reply
      • Victoria Moore

        I came back searching for this post as I just started having the exact same occurances with the owls, vultures, crows, and now I had a Redtailed Hawk sitting on top of my garage when I pulled in and it just sat there and watched me until I got out and walked towards it. It flew off then came back right above my head from left to right. But as an update to my previous experiences in January that I wrote about I can say that I believe those birds were sending me warnings. My son ended up telling me one night that he had seen the owl in his window 2 times that last week of January. I ended up in the E.R. Feb 1st in the beginning of sepsis and having to have surgery to get my gallbladder out as an emergency. I was in the hospital for a couple days. I came home and the owl was perched on the wires in front of my house and it spread its wings out, that is how I noticed it, it stayed like that until I walked inside. The next day my brother in law committed suicide. I stopped seeing all the birds immediately. I went to his house a few days later and on his patio was a wooden statue of an owl that he carved. It stopped me in my tracks.

        Reply
  10. Monique

    I went out on the porch this morning at 12:45 because I couldn’t sleep. There was a barred owl perched on the roof of the porch across from me. It did not move, I turned on the outside light to see it better….it did not move….just stared at me. I shut off the light because I felt it was disrespectful. I just stood and admired it….looking into it’s dark eyes. I wished it well and thanked it for visiting; then went back inside. I looked out the window about 20 minutes later…but it was gone. I know the owl came to me for a very specific reason and I am grateful….I will listen to my intuition <3

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Lovely story. Thanks for sharing. I love how you turned the light off for the owl. So thoughtful and so much gratitude in your encounter.

      Reply
  11. Haley

    This afternoon a barred owl ran into my window a couple hours before sundown. I wasn’t sure what kind of bird it was at first and it lay unmoving for about 10 minutes before jumping up and staring directly in my eyes before flying off. I have never seen or heard another owl where I live and am curious as to the meaning of this. When the bird struck the window it startled me but I didn’t realize it was probably a bird until a few minutes later. Between that and the way the owl looked at me, I felt as though it was telling me “pay attention” but I have no clue what to pay attention to. Any advice or thoughts would be appreciated.

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      “Pay attention” feels very accurate for this encounter. Owl is asking you to be more fully present in each moment so something doesn’t knock you down and take you by surprise (like the car did to the owl). It’s also saying that even if you do get knocked down that you won’t stay down for long. You’re strong and can fly off again regardless of your challenges.

      Reply
  12. NataYAH Blue

    Can I first say, I love love love your art, it speaks to me and I can tell you capture soul like very rare artists can…
    Anyways, I found your page after looking up barred owls spiritual meaning.
    Yesterday (the night after the crazy blue moon, I’m really really affected by fill and new moons,) I was playing in the river in my backyard with my 4 kids and husband for a lol while. When I started walking back with my littlest on my back an owl was hooting at me from just 10 feet away in a tree.
    I stopped and made eye contact with it while it rolled off what seemed like a list of things to do. I always feel like I’m on the razor edge of completely understanding what my birds messages are, like it’s on the tip of my tongue and I just need to hear 1 thing to put it all together, hence why I’m asking you cause I respect your response. Yet, everytime i sit and silently wait for the understanding it seems to unsettle whatever creature I am in contact with, and they withdraw but always stay within range but at greater distance as I ” lean in” figuratively.. It’s a source of frustration as my need to know is very strong.
    The owl had been trying to get my attention since I’ve moved here in Atlanta 3 weeks ago.
    Hooting and sounding like a chattering monkey right outside my window, which I didn’t know was the owl until he confronted me and commanded my attention
    Now having this owl in front of me he was going through all the sounds he had been making that had been a mystery for past 3 weeks..

    I listened intently and holding eyes with him was exhilarating and made my energy buzz.. which was a relief because I have been fighting back exhaustion and morning sickness (I know the layers keep peeling off this onion lol)

    I have not heard or seen him since (2 days)

    I just wanted to share with likeminded people and get their responses cause truth rings like a bell to me no matter what the source.

    Blessings. NataYAH Blue

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Thank you for the compliments. I too had an intense blue moon experience (but with serpent). I know all about that energy buzz feeling – you’re definitely connecting with them. The next time you are trying to hear or understand a message, send your attention down to your heart. Let your heart FEEL what intuitive feelings/knowings come up? Trust them right away without doubting. As soon as you start analyzing you are in your head again. Whenever an animal communicates with me they usually communicate in symbols or feelings or simple knowings/words. I’m not always sure what the meaning is right away. Sometimes I have to go about my day/week and I’ll make the connection in a surprising way. Be patient with yourself. Thanks for sharing

      Reply
  13. Tea

    Tonight while having a late dinner, I heard a barred owl calling from right outside my back window. It was very close . He/she gave 4 hoo-wah calls and then stopped. At first I was very scared because I never heard that sound before…I finally found it on YouTube and definitely can say it was a barred owl. I’m wondering if the visit holds meaning to what I had been thinking at that very moment or for something else.

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      It could potentially hold meaning for what you were thinking about. ‘4 hoots’ is what stood out to me in your story. The number for has a symbolism of “completion”.

      Reply
  14. Donna

    Last night, while driving home, a barred owl swooped down out of nowhere, and landed right in front of my car. if I hit my brakes, I would have hit him. Instead I swerved bately missing him. ITjrough the whole incident he didnt move. We had strong eye contact, I think the whole time.

    Reply
  15. Joanne m

    The other day my husband and I were going for a walk in the woods- just before we got out of the truck a Barred Owl flew low, window height, right next to my husband. I quickly got out to see where he landed- I was Able to see his whole body and beautiful face. Then he flew off back in the same direction he came from- leaving a a present as he flew off- a feather. Both of us looked for a good five minutes to locate the feather. I turned away for a moment knowing that this gift was for my husband to find, just then the wind blew, I turned around to see the feather stand up directly in front of my husband. 100% that was spirit! Xo

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Wow!!! I love this story so much. Thank you for sharing. Such a beautiful gift from spirit.

      Reply
  16. Cheska

    So last night the man I love but sadly cannot have at the moment for various reasons & I were walking home together after a couple of weirdly off energetic days between us,still fun just off.when we were hugging & saying goodnight a barred owl called out & then another one in response(they were doing there mating calls)they went on for awhile,then once they were done another pair called out from another direction(im sure both of our hearts were filled joy & amazement in this moment)then once that pair quieted down another pair called out from a. Different direction(we were pretty much completely surrounded!)it was such an incredibly deeply magical moment!..im curious if anyone has any advice on what this may have meant?the owl is one of my main spirit animals so I feel it was definitely calling & talking to me.so if anyone has a response it would be much appreciated,thank you.blessings,love & light??

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      That is a really beautiful moment. Love is everywhere, all around you. There are more romantic options available than you can currently perceive. If the current timing is not right with this man, there are other beautiful potential relationships possible. It takes 2 to “call” out to one another in a mating call. If you both are not ready to call out to each other at this moment, it’s ok. If you are ready, then that’s wonderful too.

      Reply
  17. Roger

    Today i was in my yard and heard this screeching, upon a little looking around i noticed 3 barred owls in the trees along our fence line. They just sat in the trees about 20yds from eachother looking back at me, and then back amongst themselves. Then after about a half hr of this the one closest to me flew to the limb where the next one sat. The two seemes to share the spot and it was like they were sitting and consulting with one another. The third suddenly flew up from below and the two acted like they were going to attack it, and then one of them flew after it. The largest of them all remained on the limb observing the other two and looking back at me every so often. This behavior carried on throughout the entire day. Is this odd behavior for them?

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      I love how observant you are of their behavior. Animals are social beings and I suspect that this is not odd behavior of them. What’s special is that you are tuning into them and they are noticing that you’re watching. Through observation, we can form connections with animals and they will want to start communicating with us in their own way.

      Reply
  18. Lisa

    Hello, I live on a 35 acre forest preserve and we have a lot of Barred owls that I hear all the time. I have never had an encounter with one until today. Usually Hawk is my spirit animal and has been for 20 years.

    Today I was out cutting flowers on my deck and there was Blue Jay being very loud and obnoxious. I said ” you are very annoying,” and as soon I said it I realized there was an owl just a few feet away from me perched on my fence post staring at me. I think the Blue Jay was actually trying to annoy the owl. It sat there for about 30 seconds. And I was so excited! Afterward I started thinking that this was a very unusual encounter and that it is some kind of message for me.

    My husband died 4 years ago and I use to get messages from him through hawk encounters. But I am not sure who or what this message is for. I am taking care of my 92 years old mother who has dementia and I keep making plans for my future in education and spirituality, when I have my life back again. I also struggle with fibromyalgia health problems, etc.

    Any ideas what this message could be about?
    Thanks!

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      I’m not sure what the specifics of this message are for you but it definitely sounds like owl is interested in connecting with you. Keep being aware of how owls show up for you and I’m sure the message will become clearer for you over time. It seems like you have some good experience already with interpreting bird energy from hawk, and I love how you noticed the blue jay was speaking to the owl. Owls can be quite mysterious and quiet, maybe this was just the introduction of your future relationship with owl?

      Reply
  19. Danielle

    Last summer my husband and I ventured into Algonquin Park for a week of backwoods camping after our wedding.
    We were visited by a barred owl each evening by the campfire. It would sit and stay in close proximity to us. Although at first alarmed by its presence, we eventually recognized its trust, comfort and friendship.
    On our last night we had a bear encounter at our tent. The bear thumped loudly through the woods, stopping at our tent – nudging and snorting aggressively right at our heads.
    We laid motionless, not a sound in the woods aside from our hearts pounding on the ground below us.
    In what could have been minutes or seconds, our friend, the barred owl called out (To us? To the bear?) “who whoo, who whooo”. The bear bolted away from us, into the woods. I believe the owl protected us and saved our lives.
    Completely in awe, we returned to the same sight months later. The owl returned. This visit, we enjoyed an orchestra across the lake between him and two other barred owls that would call out to each other in a triangle across the water.
    A year later, we returned again, as did our barred owl friend (Otis). He flew silently past us while we sat quietly at the water on our last evening, and later called out to us from across the lake.
    We lost my father a month later. He had been fighting cancer for 12 years. I have read barred owls are a visit from the afterlife, or an indication of death.
    I often wonder, if my father had crossed into a different realm, though he was still physically present here with us. He spent most of this past year sleeping, leading me to wonder if he had already transitioned into a different realm after my marriage last summer (our initial encounter with the owl)
    Please tell me what you think about this. Please give me any insight or meaning. Anyone and everyone.
    Perhaps just reading these other encounters is helpful for me, perhaps mine might be for someone else? Regardless, I have enjoyed reading this thread immensely. Beautiful site.

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Thank you so much for sharing this story. What a very special close bond you have with this Owl. Definitely connected and looking over you. I’ve heard stories of Owls noticing and helping souls transition to their next phase. This could be a connection with your Father’s passing. If so, he had a very loving Owl to guide him through that moment. A friend of mine was visited by a Barn Owl when she was giving birth to her baby, who was unfortunately born ill and was not going to stay with us for long. Their baby lived much longer than expected (2 weeks). The Barn Owl was present during the whole process. Not in an ominous way, in a protective way. A guardian who was aware of the situation and wanted to be present for all involved. I honor the connection you have with this Barred Owl. What an amazing connection, guide, and guardian you have.

      Reply
  20. Dawn

    I had a dream last night that was very vivid. It had me spending my day off trying to understand it. I dreamt that my son and I were walking by a park in our area, and it had changed in that there was a beautiful waterfall with rocks at the front of the park. Then, a huge barred owl, absolutely beautiful flew down and landed on one of the rocks in front of the waterfall and just watched us. My son and I were standing on the sidewalk in awe of how cool it was to see, when another huge owl with a very turquoise blue, purple-pink hue to its wings came flying from the left across and down, it showed us its beautiful wings before it turned and looked at me and had a human face. It was gorgeous. I didn’t feel threatened in any way and it did not say anything…. it just looked and smiled. I am not sure what the meaning is….
    The waterfall was amazing and the owls were too. The colors and vividness were unreal. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thank you.

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Wow, that does sound really beautiful. I especially love the turquoise blue, purple-pink owl joining you. The human face on the owl could be symbolic of your inner owl nature. That humans are also part of the animal kingdom. Asking you to merge or embrace some of the energy of owls. Or maybe the owl was trying on being human to be closer to you to understand you better. Or perhaps you were visited by someone close to you who has a strong connection with owls. There are so many possibilities. The pieces could fall more into place over time. For now, enjoy the beautiful experience for what it is.

      Reply
  21. Christy

    I have a barred owl that perches on my post at the end of my back door steps. He lets certain people walk past him, down the steps without flying away. He is so close you can touch him. I would love to share my photos with you. Just a few months ago I found an injured great horned owl in my front yard. Owl has been more present in my life the last few months, more than ever.

    Reply
  22. Cindy

    The day I arrived home after my sons funeral a Barred Owl flew in and landed on a tree branch about 12 feet from my deck which sits high off the ground. The owl sat there for over 30 minutes watching over my dog in the yard and my husband, my best friend, and myself standing on the deck. It was still there when we had to leave the house but was gone when we got home. The Owl was incredibly beautiful and stared into my eyes as though it was looking deep into my soul. I found this to be incredible timing as none of us had ever seen a owl before and it showed up right after we got home at 3 o’clock in the afternoon.

    Reply
  23. Nina

    We recently lost my father-in-law and this weekend there was an owl sitting on a branch right off of our deck – it’s winter in NH, so no leaves or anything for it to hide in. It sat for a few, head turning back and forth, looking right at us through the slider door to our deck, before it flew away. Any thoughts if this is related to the passing of my father in law?

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      I don’t know what exactly this means specifically to your father in law, but owls are often seen by people after a loved one has passed. They are said to help with the transition process. Its a really beautiful gift and symbol that this owl visited you at that time. A comforting gesture of his passing.

      Reply
  24. Patty Cook

    I’ve encountered barred owls in a couple of different places I’ve lived. I first heard them in the Midweat, as a child, in our yard.
    I moved to the Pacific Northwest, and ended up seeing different owls. One night I was walking quite late down a lane and felt I was being watched. I turned my head, and saw an owl gliding from tree to tree, never taking its huge yellow eyes off mine. It was almost unsettling!
    Then, I heard barred owls outside our home. I ended up hiking up a steep hill to find them, perched in a tall tree, watching me. (I also got to walk out the door to see a huge pileated woodpecker when we lived there, which was fantastic.)
    Now I’m in the Midwest. There have been more and more barred owls attracted to the suburb where we live, probably because there are lots of creeks and older mature trees. I have heard them at night, and early morning, and have called back and forth once or twice with them.
    This morning I went out the back door with my dog on a leash (it’s very muddy right now and I didn’t want her rolling in the mud.) As I opened the door, I saw a huge bird land in the yew tree next to the back porch. I thought it was a hawk, and instinctively shooed it away. (Cardinals usually nest in that tree and I thought that the hawk might be after them.)
    Ah, guess what? It was NOT a hawk. It was a huge barred owl. It flew to the fence, and stopped to look at me. I was so surprised – I wished it well, and regretting shooing it away. Although, it’s possible the owl was after the cardinals . . . one never knows.
    I appreciate all birds, but have loved owls all my life. I feel that they’re always watching me!

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      It feels like they are watching you, and you them. I love your story, thanks.

      Reply
  25. Heather Waldrup

    I’ve been struggling with a personal conflict. I relocated last year, and went from the country to the city for my career. But after the fun & excitement wore off, I’ve realized that I’m constantly bouncing from “I’m independent” to “I’m lonely”. I’ve had my eye on the same man for a year now, but we live on opposite ends of the US & work together, so I keep it relatively in the DL. I’ve been needing a sign- well today I had an amazing church service that truly spoke to me & reminded me of him. I prayed a silent prayer, asking God to hear my heart. Not for a man – but for my enternal peace. But later today him & I talked for a while – and tonight I hear the barred owl calling right outside of my door. Almost as if it was telling me goodnight- a sense of peace truly came over me!

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Such a beautiful connection and prayer and story. Thanks for sharing

      Reply
  26. Christine

    Hello I am hoping to get a answer
    I live on 3 acres of land and have been hearing barred owls awhile and one would come by my window and hoot his butt off lol. So I have have been hooting outside for awhile and they would hoot back. I so love when he responds back. Well last night we were outside working and who did I see?!. My owls and to top it off him and 2 of his babies came right over me perched in my tree for hours and I was able to watch him feed his babies and see him soar through the night. I love owls they make me feel at peace but being that close to them and then seeing him feed his young!.. wow I am just flattered I told them thank you for visiting me and letting me see your babies while chilling in my tree. I’m curious to know exactly what this means?

    Reply
    • Christine Migues

      I haven’t heard anything from You about My post. I just wanna share I am still having encounters with My Owl and His Owlets which is Awesome. It’s Killing Me to know what exactly is He trying to get across to Me?.. Last Night I was Outside and I heard (Owl~Win) Hoot just once and I Hooted back normal to Him then He again only did One Hoot. Then it went Silent, My Husband informs Me that A Baby Owl is in Our Tree plain as Day, Perched on a Branch peacefully just looking at My Husband and I. The Flashlight on Him didn’t even Bother Him!. All I could see was His BIG Eyes glowing and All I could do was Admire Him and have a Normal Conversation with Him!.. And Of Course asking “What is it You’re trying to tell Me”? and Then We went Inside and went to Bed. I hope You can assure Me and maybe explain a little bit of what’s maybe going on!?.. It would be a Blessing to Just Hear Back from You!.. Thank You and Have A Blessed Night
      P. S. I admire Your Stories and Artwork as well

      Reply
      • Tanya Casteel

        Thank you. I just responded to your first comment. I go through “seasons” when I’m able to answer comments. I’m so excited to hear that you’re still talking with the owls!! They feel so comfortable around you and speak to you as their own. Communicating with animals is usually not very literal. Try to check in with the emotional senses that are going on in your body and your intuition next time you are talking with them. Consider what is going on in your day, or life, or thoughts, that the owls could be responding to. Slowly start practicing trusting the feelings within you and remember that there isn’t an exact right or wrong way to interpret them. Connecting with animals goes beyond intellectual thinking.

        Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      It sounds like you have a really close bond with owl energy and this owl recognizes your connection and feels like family with you. Close enough to you to feel safe exposing its babies around you. It seems like owl is just sharing in the appreciation and love of connecting with you. Possibly encouraging you to “nurture” others whom you consider “family”.

      Reply
  27. Carson Stull

    I was driving late at night in the rural, mountainous region of North Carolina. I had my windows down because of the lovely and chilled weather the summer mountains have to offer. I was cruising. Not a worry nor a conflict to be encountered. When I almost arrived at my destination, suddenly a young barred owl flew straight into my window and hit me in the neck. It wasn’t hard. In fact, it felt like someone perfectly timed flinging a stuffed animal at me. I let out a short scream and slammed on my brakes. I punched the light and looked down at my feet. A young barred owl looked stunned so I opened my door and let it hop out. I immediately started to cry. It didn’t appear to be in any sort of pain, only shock. I gave it a nudge and it ran the side of the road. I wanted to get out and help it but I repeatedly stated with tears pooling in my eyes “I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I just can’t. I just can’t.” I’m not so sure what I couldn’t do. I’m not sure if I couldn’t withstand the idea of hurting an animal or if I couldn’t take being greeted by and following my spirit guide. I must confess, for a better explanation of my emotional state, that I became vegan about a year ago: in doing so, I have created a lifestyle and ideology around the better treatment and moral consideration of all animals. I pulled into my driveway, called my partner, and told her the story. She understands my concern for animals. She cried with me and supported me. As much as I wanted her comfort, I had to go check if the owl was okay. I drove back to the area where we engaged each other and there was no sign of the owl. I assume it flew off because it had delivered its message, whatever that may be. This calmed me down although my heart was still beating fast. The owl, a messenger, was trying to tell me something but I cannot decipher the message. Earlier that day, I considered getting a tattoo of all the animals that have brought me closer to nature and all animal species. Like the barred owl, I wanted to adorn myself with a representation of my identity and sacred space. Was this a push towards a path that I cannot yet see? Was it a stamp of approval? Possibly a fist greeting by my spirit guide? I wish I spoke owl. A fraction faster, it would’ve ran into me back window. Dead. A second slower. My windshield. Dead. It was timed perfectly. It was no accident.

    Reply
    • Phil brown

      Iv e seen and heard owls all of my life many many many times twice I have Ben able to walk up and pet the owl. Once with a friend there to witness it. This is in real life not a dream. Lately I’ve had a owl hanging around my house for weeks now. And it has been killing but not earing mice and things then leavinh them in front of my house . Like a gift or something. What’s your take on this.

      Thanks

      Phil brown

      Reply
      • Tanya Casteel

        Owl loves you. Cats do this, they hunt and bring/offer gifts. It seems like you have a strong connection with Owl. Owl is showing its loyalty to you.

        Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      So perfectly timed! Wow, this is an incredible encounter. I love your wording of “stamp of approval?”. Yes, I think you got the owls official stamp of approval right there on your neck, literally. The meaning will deepen for you over time. I also live in the mountains of North Carolina, such a beautiful and magical place. Thanks for sharing.

      Reply
  28. Susan Johnson

    Lots of barred owl activity in the past 3 months. I “called” one in from the woods behind my house to within 5 feet of me at night and that scared me. Then one flew into my window @ 6AM but recovered and stayed on the deck for 15 minutes. Three days later, I think the same one was in my front yard @ 9AM. Then last night one perched on my outdoor sculpture, near my hot tub, and wouldn’t be scared away for a long time. I wanted it to not be comfortable there near the hot tub because if it returned it would scare my daughter. What’s it all mean?

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      I’m not sure, but it sounds like Owl is wanting to connect with you. Does anything I’ve written about owl resonate with your life at the time they were visiting you?

      Reply
  29. Eric Nies

    I observed owls mating in nature. What do you feel the meaning of this is? ❤️

    Reply
  30. Marni Lee

    Hi, This morning after taking a walk, I just found a beautiful Barred owl feather in the middle of my yard. I know it’s a beautiful sign from Spirit. (I found your website while doing research to find out who the feather belonged to. Love when Spirit & the Universe show me signs I get very excited. I think your artwork is amazingly beautiful and I don’t believe in coincidences but syncronicities
    I was lead to find you to receive the message I needed. Thank you. I will now love to follow you on FB. Be well

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Thank you! I love when messages align like that <3

      Reply
  31. Cecilia Rivera

    Good evening, My husband took the dog out at 7:30 pm. Very low in the tree by the garage was a barred owl. He just sat there looking. My husband went inside to get his camera. When I returned with my son at 7 :45 he was still there. We went over too and he looked at us and let us take close up pictures. Another 5 minutes and my daughter arrived with her fiance. They were suppose to get married on the 26 but due to COVID 19 it has been postponed. Again they also went out to see it. It watched them and also let them take pictures. Once they began to enter my home he just turned around but remained on the branch. I immediately came inside to do my research. What do you think is the meaning??

    Reply
    • Tanya Casteel

      Oh wow, that is a very insistent owl who definitely wants to be noticed by your family. Owls with their great vision ask us to see beyond the obvious and get curious about things. Was there anything going on with your family or your life circumstances at the time that owl wanted you to think deeper about? Was something not as it seemed? That’s so great you were able to get photos of the owl.

      Reply
  32. Robbin A Boulware

    I see barred owls often just recently on Mother’s Day and then again a few days later on Mother’s Day it flew right over my head and the next time flew right in front of me. I decided to follow to see if I could see where it landed and it was as if it was waiting for me it’s not long enough for my daughter to bring me my camera and I start to snap a few shots of it after that I left and when I came back it was gone but lo and behold it was waiting there but I also saw two babies and another owl so in total we saw four. It was like a scene out of Harry Potter two of the younger ones were in one tree the other were in another tree and one was flying! Are used to be afraid of hours but not so much anymore they make me feel calm and Not afraid.

    Reply
  33. Deseri Ladd

    For the last year as I’m driving home at night an owl flys right over my path. This has happened at least once a week in different areas. He gets soo close I can’t believe he would want to get that close to a moving vehicle. Tonight he swoop right over my car if my window was down I could have barely touched him. I don’t know what he’s trying to tell me but it’s beginning to cause me great anxiety.

    Reply
  34. rachael

    so we are driving- home 4 hrs away- michael is using his gps on his phone- it’s dark- its late 10 p.m we should be half way home- his gps cuts out- no cell reception on a back road and we are lost- he asks me if i think he should turn around, and i said no- keep going- all roads lead to roam, we will eventually get somewhere or run out of gas lol- a few miles up the road and we pass something- i said omg, i think that was an owl in the middle of the road, i said please turn around, so we did- car is now in opposite direction of where i said to go, and we get out of the car and i walk up to this owl- just standing there- i get close enough to almost touch it, and it doesn’t move- just looks at me- i bend down to pet it- thinking it will fly off asap- it doesnt! it lets me pet it!!!- i said somethings wrong! its probably hurt- michael gets a bin from his trunk, and gives it to me- the owl lets me pick him up and put him in the bin!!! no fight- im really worried it has a broken wing- i get in the back seat with the owl on my lap- window is down- michael says should i turn around? you wanted to go the other way- i said no- just go in this direction, we need to find an e.r vet asap- so we drive off and for 15 min the owl is just sitting there- then suddenly jumps onto the open window ledge- i tell michael to stop the car-he does- we see a fork in the rd- the one we should have taken! and just then the owl looks at me- turns and flys off into the trees!!!! there was nothing wrong with the owl! we get on the fork turn, michaels gps starts working and we get home fine! i still can’t get over it- any insights? i have pics too

    Reply
  35. Audra

    Yesterday I was out hiking in a new area. I was clambering around with my little dog. I wanted to make noise to keep bears and cougars at bay. I walked down a path that got to thick so I turned around. I passed this owl twice. On my way back on the same trail. There was a beautiful large barred owl on top of a broken tree at my eye level. The owl looked at me. I looked in amazement at the owl. The owl turned away. I captured a pic. The owl turned back to look at me. Then swiveled the neck around to the other side to look at me. So beautiful! I talked gently to the owl so as to alarm the owl. I started to walk and tripped over the little dog and continued on my path. The owl was so majestic. When I returned from my hike I started looking at spiritual meaning of this encounter.

    Reply
  36. Mark

    I was going out our driveway early in the morning – driveway is long and goes through forest. A barred owl flew *right* over the car going from the rear to the front. He then perched in a tree at basically eye level about five yard away. I stopped the car and rolled down the window, and he just looked at me for about give minutes. I “chatted” with him. It was amazing. This pair has been on our land since we moved here seven years ago.

    Reply

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