Blue jay meaning and symbolism include protection, loyalty, bravery, majesty, and other notable traits. Native to southern Canada and the eastern U.S., the blue jay is an important figure in the mythology and folklore of these regions. Plus, blue jay spiritual meaning is sacred to those who feel there is far more to these beautiful birds than their boisterous nature.
In this post, we’ll explore all facets of blue jay symbolism and meaning, including blue jay spiritual meaning, mythology, folklore, the blue jay spirit animal, and more.
Table of Contents
- What do blue jays symbolize?
- Blue Jay Feather Meaning
- Seeing a Dead Blue Jay Meaning
- What does it mean if a blue jay hits your window?
- Meaning of Seeing Blue Jays Flying Overhead
- Blue Jay Mythology and Folklore
- Native American Blue Jay Meanings
- Blue Jay Folklore in the American South
- 4 Blue Jay Spiritual Meanings
- Blue Jay Spirit Animal
- Blue Jay Power Animal
- Blue Jay Totem Animal
- Blue Jay Dream Meaning
- Blue Jay Tattoo Meaning
- How You Can Help Blue Jays
What do blue jays symbolize?
If one of these beautiful blue birds captures your attention by singing from a tree top nearby or appearing in art, the media, or elsewhere – pay attention. There are no coincidences. Blue jay sightings are always good omens, and these boisterous creatures have a lot to say.
As noted above, here’s what the blue jay might symbolize in your life. We’ll go into more details on these qualities throughout this post:
Blue Jay Meaning: Protection
One of the reasons that blue jays are so conspicuous to people is that they are loud and boisterous. A big part of why they’re so loud is that they’re incredibly protective birds. They will aggressively defend their nests, food sources, and territory.
In fact, even other birds take notice of the jay’s vigilance. If a blue jay sounds the alarm, birds of other species will react, sometimes even leaving an area.
Because of their defensive natures, the blue jay symbolizes protection. Though they lack the fierce qualities of the bear, the blue jay will still wreak havoc if something they love is under threat. They’re even known to attack humans.
Thus, the blue jay is a powerful reminder to be protective of those and that which you hold dear, whether it’s your family and friends, your personal boundaries, or your ideas.
The blue jay isn’t known for being a very fast flier. However, what they lack in speed, they make up for in bravery. While they are small birds, they let their voices be heard and they don’t hesitate to drive away larger birds if they feel threatened.
So, the blue jay is a positive symbol for mustering your courage even if you feel insecure in some way. Be bold, speak up, and make your voice heard!
Blue Jay Symbolism: Loyalty
Like the eagle, the raven, and many other bird species, the blue jay is monogamous and mates for life. Thus, the blue jay symbolism also includes loyalty.
It’s fitting that the color blue also symbolizes loyalty. As the saying goes, A true blue friend will never let you down.
The blue jay represents not only being true to those you love. They also symbolize having loyalty to yourself. In other words, speak your truth fearlessly and never be afraid to be who you truly feel that you are inside.
Blue jays are migratory birds and they will sometimes travel in flocks of over 200 birds. In addition, a group of blue jays will team up to protect an area from intruders.1
Furthermore, both the female and the male of their species will work together to care for their nest and young chicks.
Because of their cooperative nature, the blue jay also symbolizes teamwork.
So, if you see a group of blue jays and wonder what it means symbolically, consider whether you have the right team around you. We all need a little help from our friends every now and then. The blue jay is a reminder that if you don’t already have a great flock around you, go out and find it!
In addition to their beautiful plumage, blue jays are conspicuous because they’re noisy. They love to sing and they love to be heard.
Fittingly, the blue jay’s beautiful feathers are the color of the blue chakra, also called the throat chakra, which governs communication.
So, blue jays also represent communication.
If you see a blue jay, it can be a sign to speak your truth.
It can also be a reminder of the importance of healthy communication in all relationships. In addition to being heard, communication is about listening and acknowledging (sometimes even repeating to make sure you got it right!) – what the other person has to say.
Seeing a Blue Jay: Opportunity
Another quality that the blue jay possesses is that they are known to be opportunists. For one, they are omnivores, eating a wide variety of foods, from acorns to seeds and nuts, to insects, frogs, mice, and sometimes other birds’ eggs.2
They won’t pass up a bird feeder either. And they’re known to chase other birds away so they can have it all to themselves.
In addition, like their fellow cousins from the corvid family of birds, the raven and the crow, the blue jay enjoys stealing bright and shiny objects and stashing them, along with food, for later.
As a result, blue jay meaning also includes opportunity. The blue jay is a reminder that opportunity can come from out of nowhere, so be ready!
If a blue jay appears in your life, it can also be a sign to be open-minded about the opportunities that come your way. If you miss catching that first opportunity, you never know, there could be an even bigger and better bird feeder around the corner.
Blue Jay Symbolism: Hope and Dreams
As they are the color of the sky, the blue jay is also a good luck symbol for dreaming big.
Envisioning the life you want to live starts in your imagination. So, dream big. The blue jay is here to tell you that the sky’s the limit.
Seeing a Blue: Majesty
The blue jay’s beautiful blue feathers look like a coat and tails and their white breast appears like a crisp white shirt. They also have a black ring around their necks that looks like a black tie or a ribbon that should hold a medal. And topping off this ensemble is the unmistakable crest atop the blue jay’s head, which resembles a little crown.
Because of their fancy attire and boastful confidence, blue jay meaning also includes majesty. The jay is a positive symbol for holding your head high and being proud of who you are. As Maya Angelou said, “Your crown has been bought and paid for. So, put it on your head and wear it.”
Blue Jay Feather Meaning
Birds’ feathers carry much of the symbolic meaning of the bird themselves. So, if you see a blue jay feather, it can carry the same meanings as blue jay symbolism, including protection, courage, loyalty, dreams, and majesty.
It can also mean that the spirit of a loved one who has passed is sending you a greeting.
In the U.S., Native Americans have the legal right to use bird feathers in their spiritual ceremonies. However, for non-Native people, it’s illegal to possess migratory bird feathers under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA).3
(Personally, as an animal lover and an environmentalist, I enjoy experiencing nature and animals but I don’t believe in taking trophies from nature home with me. So, if you see a blue jay feather, I think it’s best to enjoy its symbolic meaning and beauty and leave it where you found it!)
Seeing a Dead Blue Jay Meaning
Many people are understandably upset if they come across a dead bird or other animal. If you find a dead blue jay, you may wonder what it means and if it’s some kind of sign.
From an environmental standpoint, it can be important to try to find out why a bird has died in your area. The cause can be pesticides, rat poison, or some other toxin. However, blue jays only live in the wild for about seven years. So, it’s also possible that the bird died of natural causes.
What’s important if you find a dead blue jay is to honor them. Many psychics and mediums say that when people and animals pass, their spirits do have some interest in what happens to their earthly bodies. This is why so many cultures around the world have spiritual traditions about honoring the bodies of those who have passed, whether through burial, cremation, or another tradition.
So, if you come across a dead blue jay, don’t view it as a bad omen. Instead, it can mean that you have been chosen to honor their life and their spirit through prayer, meditation, or in another way.
What does it mean if a blue jay hits your window?
It’s awful to witness a bird hitting a window. Birds will fly into windows because the reflection on the window appears to be trees or sky.
The Humane Society has recommendations on how you can help prevent blue jays and other birds from flying into windows. In addition, there are a number of YouTube videos with recommendations.
As with dead blue jay meaning, I view these things happening as an opportunity for helping or honoring the bird.
Meaning of Seeing Blue Jays Flying Overhead
If you see a blue jay or flock of blue jays flying overhead, it’s the perfect time to make a wish and send a prayer. Blue jays embody the idea of dreaming big and feeling confident that your prayers will be heard!
Blue Jay Mythology and Folklore
As a bird who is native to North America, the blue jay is important in Canadian and American mythology and folklore. Here are some of those stories:
Native American Blue Jay Meanings
In Native American culture, the blue jay, like the crow and the coyote, is a clever trickster. While some Native Americans view the blue jay as a clever medicine animal, others view them as boastful troublemakers.
For example, in one Chinook legend, the blue jay visits the land of the dead, where his sister, Ioi, lives because she has married a ghost.
Bluejay in the Land of the Dead
While in the land of the dead, Bluejay realized that when he sang or called out, he could turn the dead into piles of bones.
Not one to pass up a good prank, Bluejay teased the dead by mixing up their bones. In one case, he put the skull of a child on an adult’s body. Then, he brought the dead back to life.
He also told the dead that a log was a dead beached whale. So, the dead tried to strip the log of its bark, thinking they were getting to the whale meat. This made Bluejay laugh until his belly hurt.
Sick of the pranks, Bluejay’s ghost of a brother-in-law begged his wife, Ioi, to send her brother back to the land of the living. Ioi obliged. However, even in the land of the living, Bluejay continued his pranks.
Eventually, Bluejay died in a fire, so he had to re-enter the land of the dead. However, his curse for being a trickster was that he didn’t believe he was really dead, so he went crazy.4
The Legend of the Chinook Wind
Another Chinook legend tells the tale of how the Chinook Wind came to be.
Bluejay, Magpie, and Crow were the daughters of Thunderbird and they all lived happily in a beautiful valley.
However, one day, a hunter came through and started a campfire. When he was done hunting, he left, forgetting to put out the fire.
The fire grew into a giant fires and burned throughout Thunderbird’s valley. Nearly all the animals and plants died.
Furious at the careless act, Thunderbird sent a freezing wind that drove all the people and animals around the valley away. They traveled far south to find warmth so they would not die. It was so cold that even Thunderbird’s daughters were forced to fly south.
After some time, Thunderbird missed her daughters so much that she decided to make it warm again. So, she sent the warm Chinook Wind throughout the valley. Eventually, the people, animals, and Thunderbird’s daughters returned.
(According to the National Park Service, this legend closely parallels the actual environmental events that occurred during the Ice Age.5)
In the Pacific Northwest, however, Indigenous tribes view the Stellar’s jay (a close cousin of the blue jay) and a protective spirit, a healer, and a spirit guide. As in the Chinook legends, tribes from the Puget Sound region say the jay can travel back and forth between the land of the living and the dead.6
Blue Jay Folklore in the American South
This blue jay appears in other folktales in the U.S., particularly in the American South. According to one story, a sparrow put a yoke around the blue jay, and this is why the blue jay has a black ring around their neck.
In other stories, the blue jay is a messenger for the underworld. For example, in some African American folktales, the blue jay, who was also called the jaybird, reports to the devil and tells him of people’s sins.
In other stories, the blue jay is said to carry kernels of corn to the devil on behalf of witches who want to earn his favor.7
Still other tales say the blue jay mistakenly took a warm rock, which happened to be from Hell. The devil was so angry at his thievery that he force the blue jay to make a deal with him. The deal was that the blue jay had to bring twigs to the devil every week to stoke the fires of Hell.8
4 Blue Jay Spiritual Meanings
In conjunction with what has been written above, here are some spiritual meanings of the blue jay:
1. Spiritual Protection – The blue jay as a symbol of protection extends to spiritual protection. So, if a blue jay crosses your path, it can be a sign that you have positive energy coming your way to protect and guide you.
2. Faith – As a symbol of loyalty, blue jay spiritual meaning also includes being true to your faith. The blue jay is a reminder that there is more going on around you than what is obvious in the material world. Believe that the Universe is wise and loving and that it’s working in your favor.
3. Prayer – The blue jay’s singing symbolizes that when you pray, your prayers will be heard.
4. Angels – While the blue jay’s crest is sometimes compared to a crown, it also symbolizes a halo, or aura. Many people (myself included) believe that divine energy is manifested through animals and that birds are particularly receptive to this. Thus, blue jay spiritual meaning implies the presence of angels.
Blue Jay Spirit Animal
When the blue jay is your spirit animal, you have a confident guardian on your side.
Blue jay people love to talk, sing, and get together with people they love. They are also loyal friends and mates.
When the blue jay is your spirit animal, you are a person who dares to dream big and put your energy into making your dreams a reality.
Blue jay people also have a special connection to the divine. You are in tune with the spirit world and open to receiving celestial guidance.
If you’re curious about other animals who might be your spirit guides in addition to the blue jay, you can take UniGuide’s spirit animal quiz and read more in the spirit animal overview post.
Blue Jay Power Animal
As the name implies, a power animal can inspire you with their most dynamic traits. So, if you want to transform an area of your life, meditate on the attributes that the power animal represents. For example, you can meditate on the blue jay power animal in situations when you:
- Feel you need some protection, whether it’s emotional, financial, spiritual, or even your privacy. The blue jay is a confident bird who knows how to defend what’s theirs.
- Want to work on being a more effective communicator, whether in intimate relationships, creatively, or even performing or public speaking.
- Would like a romantic relationship that withstands the test of time.
- Want to envision a better life for yourself. The blue jay says, “Dream big! The sky’s the limit!”
Blue Jay Totem Animal
An animal totem encapsulates the protective powers of the animal they represent. Thus, the blue jay totem animal is a helpful symbol for feeling more secure and protected in your life.
The blue jay totem is also a helpful symbol for building self-confidence when you’re going into a challenging or new situation. In addition, the blue totem animal is good luck for visualization and connecting with your angels and your Higher Power.
Blue Jay Dream Meaning
What does it mean if you dream of a blue jay? Dreams are personal to each dreamer, but a blue jay dream is generally considered a good omen.
To begin, dreaming of a blue jay could mean that you had a visitation or connected with a loved one who has passed and who is now in spirit form.
A blue jay dream can also mean that you have a need to express yourself in some way. Perhaps you feel that someone close to you isn’t hearing you, or that you are not using your creative gifts for self-expression. The blue jay is a sign to let your voice be heard or share your point of view in some capacity.
If you’re still not sure about what your blue jay dream means, consider the emotions you felt in your dream. One thing we all have in common is that our subconscious emotions don’t lie to us. Analyzing the emotions you felt in your dream with how you perceive blue jays in your daily life can help you understand what your dream is telling you.
Furthermore, learning more about blue jays and what they symbolize in the collective consciousness has hopefully broadened your awareness and provided added insights.
Blue Jay Tattoo Meaning
A blue jay tattoo is a beautiful symbol that can convey a variety of messages. Of course, it can mean that you are a Toronto Blue Jays fan! Your blue jay tattoo might also mean that you value self-expression and speaking your truth.
In addition, a blue jay tattoo can also express that you are a dreamer who is putting positive energy into the world.
Of course, tattoos are personal to the one whose skin they adorn. But hopefully learning more about blue jay symbolism and folklore has brought extra meaning to your tattoo.
How You Can Help Blue Jays
While blue jay are not currently a threatened species, as with other bird populations around the world, they face threats from human activities. These include habitat loss and degradation, collisions with man-made structures, predation, pollution, pesticides, and diseases.9
If you care about blue jays, you can provide year-round accessible food and water to them with feeders and bird baths. In addition, be mindful if you see blue jay nests in your area. You can also take precautions to prevent blue jays from flying into windows. In addition, you can support bird-protection organizations like the Audubon Society.
You might like these other articles on UniGuide:
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- Crane Meaning
- Cardinal Meaning
- Blue Butterfly Meaning
- Blue Dragonfly Meaning
- 777 Angel Number
- 444 Angel Number