Dead Cardinal Spiritual Meaning: 9 Signs and Symbolism

Have you recently had a dream that featured a dead cardinal, or another bird species?

Maybe you’ve seen a dead cardinal in the flesh and it’s left a rather unpleasant taste in your mouth, proverbially.

If you’re wondering what the sign means, spiritually, you’ve come to the right place

There are a wide range of meanings behind dead cardinals. In order to figure out which one is right for you – and meant for you – we’ll need to take a step back and take the bigger picture into consideration. 

So, let’s do just that… 

What does Finding a Dead Cardinal Mean Spiritually?

Dead cardinal in spiritual world

Finding a dead bird is never a pleasant experience, regardless of the exact species.

The experience is often spiritually associated with feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and despair.

This is pretty much how most people would feel when they came across a dead animal

Thankfully, the meaning of a dead bird isn’t always quite as negative as all that.

Sometimes it can be a sign that one cycle is ending in your life, which paves the way for a new cycle.

Perhaps this new one will be a happier one for you, leaving the sadness and hopelessness behind. 

Dead Cardinal Symbolism


The cardinal is sometimes seen as a sign of death – but that doesn’t always mean that someone is about to die.

It could mean that someone beyond the grave is trying to contact you.

This bird, like many others, is considered to be a messenger, passing along notes from the spirit world to the mortal one. 

Other birds associated with death and messages from beyond include: 

  • Swans;
  • Owls;
  • Crows;
  • Vultures;
  • Blackbirds;
  • Ravens.

Also read the meaning of seeing a dead rabbit.

Dead Male Cardinal Meaning

Dead Male Cardinal
Male Cardinal

Dead male cardinals are typically omens of bad news, sad times, and death.

Since the 1700s and perhaps even before that, it was believed that seeing a dead male cardinal bird meant that you were going to die very soon.

In fact, if you saw the deceased bird in a dream, you were believed to only have twelve months, maximum, left to live

Many people have seen dead male cardinals and have not died, so it should not be taken as a given that you are going to die when you see it for yourself.

This might not be the right spiritual meaning for you.

Read the meaning of finding dead bees in your house.

Dead Female Cardinal Meaning

Dead Female Cardinal
Female Cardinal

If you are a pregnant woman and you’ve seen a dead female cardinal (or what you believe to be a female), myths and legend would suggest you’re about to go into labor! 

This likely isn’t anything to worry about if you’re close to your due date, but if you’re not, you might want to see the deceased bird as a sign to keep a slightly closer eye on your pregnancy.

  • Are you taking all your vitamins?
  • Doing everything your medical professional has advised?
  • Or are you ignoring all advice and guidance and doing whatever you want to do? 

Dead Cardinal Spiritual Meaning: 9 Signs and Messages

Dead Cardinal Spiritual Meaning

Not all dead cardinal news is bad news. There are many different spiritual meanings and messages to be interpreted from this beautiful bird, and its unfortunate passing. 

Why don’t we take a closer look? 

1) An Ending / A Beginning

As previously mentioned, seeing a dead cardinal, whether it is male or female, could be a sign that one cycle is ending and another one is beginning.

You must take into consideration your own feelings about the scenario.

  • How did you feel when you saw the dead bird?
  • Did you feel sad? Confused? Anxious?
  • Or, did you spring into action, checking the bird was definitely dead and/or trying to save it? 

Spiritual message and meanings are subjective.

They’ll be personal to you if they’re meant for you.

How did the interaction with the bird make you feel, and what did you think about afterwards?

Make a note of those things and you’ll be able to interpret the message or sign with more clarity.

Read the meaning of finding a dead deer in real life and dreams.

2) Feeling Discontent

To see a dead cardinal, or any dead bird, can be a sign that you are frustrated or discontent.

Maybe something in your life isn’t going quite the way you’d hoped for?

This might be a home you’ve moved into, or a new friendship you’ve made, a new job, or even a new relationship.

In fact, it could be almost anything, but it’s giving you some level of discontent

If this feels relevant to you, try to think about how you would remove the discontent from your life.

What steps could you take to make things better for yourself? Why not take some time to meditate, and ask whichever higher power you believe in for help and guidance? 

3) A Sign of Transformation or Transition

Are you dreaming of dead cardinals or other birds?

This might be a sign that you are about to undertake a huge change or transition in your life – and it could relate to a whole host of different things.

These include:

  • Switching careers;
  • Choosing a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle;
  • Giving up alcohol;
  • Ending a relationship;
  • Cutting out a bad friend;
  • Moving home/area/country.

Change can be scary for a lot of people.

I’m one of them. But change can also be good. It can turn something bad into something good, and turn desolation and sadness into hope and happiness. 

Sometimes, just sometimes, it’s good to embrace change

4) Bad News on your Doorstep

A dead cardinal on your doorstep is believed to be a very bad omen in some parts of the world.

If you happen to experience such a thing, there’s a chance you will experience some bad news right to your door.

This might come in the form of a scary letter, or perhaps a stranger with some bad news knocking on your door

It could be slightly more metaphorical than that too, of course. If bad luck comes to you, it generally comes to your door. 

5) Avoid the Area

Have you recently visited a new place in town and spotted a dead cardinal, or another dead animal?

Perhaps you’ve seen that deceased creature because your subconscious is telling you to be wary of that place

If you’re filled with anxiety or dread when you go to a new place, or you seem to see bad omens everywhere, perhaps you should listen to what your spiritual self is telling you? If you can, leave the area.

Something is telling you to be wary and cautious.

You should trust your gut instinct a lot more than you probably do. 

6) The Universe Believes in You

Finding a dead bird, particularly a dead cardinal, in your back yard could be a sign that you’re going to struggle in the times ahead.

This might seem like bad news, but the dead bird is actually a good omen.

It’s telling you that you will pull through. 

The universe believes in you, or someone from another realm does.

They’re telling you that they have faith in you, that you can carry on and power through the rough patch to see the light on the other side. 

7) Welcoming Peace

In the same way that seeing a dead cardinal or other bird is a sign of the end of one thing and the beginning of another, it can mean that the beginning of another is actually a phase of peace and tranquility in your life

Live can get really hectic from time to time.

For some of us, life is hectic all the time.

Make sure that you dedicate time for yourself, to allow you to get in tune with your spiritual side and keep the connection burning. 

8) Relationship Status: Complicated

When alive, the cardinal is a bird commonly associated with feelings of adoration and love. When that bird dies, it could be a sign of the adoration or love dying too

In some places, particularly amongst the tribes of North America, spotting one of these birds in a state of death is seen as a sign that your love affairs are about to go through a period of change.

This might indicate the end of a relationship, but it’s not always a bad thing.

It could be the case that YOU realize the relationship isn’t good for you and end it to move on to bigger and better things. 

These are birds that do mate for life, but they also separate from life mates to find new ones, too

9) Keep Your Eyes Open 

If a cardinal flies into your home and then dies, or you find a dead cardinal inside your home or property somewhere, it might be a sign that you need to watch your back.

Something that isn’t good is entering your life (or your home), and you must protect yourself from it. 

Perhaps a friend will stab you in the back, or a lover will betray you?

It might be neither of those things, of course, but you do need to protect yourself from the bad juju.

Place protective talismans around your home, and particularly close to the front door.

This will protect you from some of the bad stuff that might enter the threshold. 

Is a Dead Cardinal a Bad Omen?

Bad omens from a cardinal

A dead cardinal can be both a good omen and a bad omen. It all depends on where you see it, how you see it, and how you feel when you see it

If you think birds are a scary and terrifying thing, and then you see one dead, it could be indicative of overcoming the things that scare you.

The dead bird is literally you, slaying the proverbial dragon. 

If you love birds, on the other hand, and you’re unfortunate enough to find a dead one on your travels, the situation will obviously make you feel sad.

You may want to protect the creature or try to save its life.

This could be indicative of regret or wishing you had done something different to prevent the sad or bad outcome. 

A positive feeling is usually linked to a positive omen or outcome. A negative feeling is linked to the opposite, as you might expect.

How Can I Protect Myself from Dead Cardinal Bad Luck?

Sometimes in life, bad things will happen – and there will be little you can do about it.

There are few things certain in life, but birth, death, and taxes are three things you can pretty much bet your life on.

You can protect yourself spiritually from bad luck, but you can’t prevent all of it from ever hitting you.

You must experience a little rain to see a rainbow, remember. 

What Should I Do After I See a Dead Cardinal?

Here’s my personal advice: speak to your higher power and ask for guidance and advice.

Meditate, recharge your crystals, and let yourself bask in the rays of the sun.

Do whatever it is you like to do to recharge your spiritual batteries, so to speak, and then ask for protection and guidance.

And remember: not all dead cardinals mean bad luck. 

Final Words

If you’re dreaming of killing a cardinal or other bird species, you might be dreaming of cutting out something from your life.

This can be both good and bad.

You could cut bad things from your life, which is a good thing.

At the same time, you can also cut good things from your life, such as people who support you, a good job, etc. 






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