The woodpecker is an amazing bird and certainly its ability to stir up the senses and turn heads is a fact that is agreeable to bird lovers who regard it in high esteem.

The woodpecker’s fast movements whilst rapping against a tree can easily grab attention and break the monotony of silence in the woods.

The sound of a woodpecker pecking and the first thing that comes to mind is opportunity. The woodpecker symbolizes opportunity because coincidentally they are quite opportunistic themselves.

With each tree the woodpecker sees a chance of securing scrumptious food mainly ants and grubs - there delicacy and with more artistic pecking the trees offer shelters to house themselves and their young ones.

As its name suggests the woodpecker does a lot of pecking and thus very dependent on its head (beak) to achieve most of its tasks. Therefore the sighting of a woodpecker should bring into focus the need to use our heads in the form of intellect and wit to overcome challenges just as the woodpecker uses its head to hammer out solutions like finding food and shelter.

Creative vision is also another symbolic meaning of woodpeckers because of their ability to see value even in dead trees. They are able to build shelter from these dead trees and this should give us the drive to be more imaginative in our ideas.

This creative vision and imagination can be aided by returning to our roots and having belief in our inner self. Just as the woodpecker builds its home within the tree so should we return to the root of our ideas and ensure we follow through with our plans to achieve our goals.

There is also the symbolic meaning of protection as displayed by the woodpecker’s protective nature.

This is evident in its ability to build marvelous nests that serve to protect its young and it also puts a lot of effort in building and protecting its nest. Prairie tribes of native North America had myths that support this based on their choice of the woodpecker as the protector of human kind spiritual seed.

Communication is an important symbolic meaning from observing the woodpecker’s hammering which bring into mind Morse code.

Although the message is not directed to humans, the pecking is used to send messages to their kin. Drumming as a means of communication can be linked to the woodpecker in some Roman and native North American myths and traditions.

The woodpecker also symbolizes progress and determination. The hammering done by the woodpecker on trees until it finds food or builds a shelter shows the determination in the woodpecker and as result of this determination it is able to realize progress.

The woodpecker’s love for the oak tree which is also a symbol of stability and strength goes to show its determination to overcome any obstacle no matter how difficult.

Therefore the various symbolic meaning of the woodpecker should signal us to have creative vision, be protective of our ideas, to use communication effectively, to be determined and capitalize on opportunities, to return to our roots and nurture and follow through on our ideas.

Woodpecker shows up as a spirit guide when

  • You need to understand rhythms of life.
  • You need to stay away from deception until the truth is revealed.
  • You need to understand the earth’s drummer.
  • You need to be keen.
  • You need to understand the cycles and patterns of life.

Call on woodpecker as a spirit guide when

  • You need to understand some warnings.
  • You need prophecy.
  • You need connection to the earth.
  • You need to associate with thunder.
  • You need to find some hidden information.

By Flo Saul
Mar 23, 2013