Lyrebird illustrated by Ravenari


Listening to the true meaning of others. Listening to spirit. Creating a unique song. Letting the voices of others move through you. Channelling. Keeping your sacred spaces clean. Freeing yourself of clutter. Releasing your true voice. Introversion. Truth.

General Description:

The lyrebird is an endemic ground-dwelling Australian bird that is so-named because the male’s tail forms the shape of a ‘lyre.’ This tail is displayed during courtship, which is often accompanied by a unique, complex song that features complex mimicry. The male will perform his dance, display and song on a courtship mound, at which point an enticed female will mate with him and then go away to build her own nest and raise her offspring.

The lyrebird has the most complex or sophisticated syrinx (voice box) of any songbird. During their long, complex courting songs they voluntarily imitate humans, machinery (car engines, alarms, camera shutters), other animals (kookaburras, dogs barking, magpie calls and so on), musical instruments and explosions. The female lyrebird is also adept at mimicry. Lyrebirds are intensely shy, so they are often only ‘found’ via their unique calls. Lyrebirds live in forests and consume arthropods and seeds. The lyrebird is ancient, and has been found in the fossil record at 15 million years ago. It is immortalised on the Australian 10c coin.

Lessons and Challenges:

Lyrebird teaches us to listen not only to what other people say, but to what might be the true meaning behind their words and actions. The lyrebird itself might sing a car alarm, which often indicates warning, but when the lyrebird sings it, it is a call for love and attention. It is a call to other lyrebirds, and a form of bonding. Likewise, lyrebird encourages you to listen to not what people are saying on the surface, but to what their words might communicate at a real and emotional level. Aggression may indicate a desire for love, and false flattery may indicate a hidden ugliness. Lyrebird gives us this power to see the truth in what a person is saying, no matter how they are saying it. Lyrebird is a very powerful energy for seeing through lies and facades down to the truth of the matter.

Lyrebird teaches us how to listen to the spirit. This often involves finding quiet places, or becoming introverted so that we might quieten our external surroundings and hear what is beneath all of that. The rustle of leaves in a tree, the sound of rain falling, all of these gentle sounds are the spirit, which always has a message for us if we shut out the ‘noise’ and invite the spirit into our lives.

Lyrebird’s ‘true song’ is a mish mash of the songs and sounds of the world around it, improvised and often creatively changed to become its own music. Likewise, when we speak, our words and our accent, our ideas and our thoughts area mish mash of those in the external world. Lyrebird encourages us to make this external influence our own, to change it into something that is only a reflection of our personality, but into something that we can then sing and speak outwards again to others. Lyrebird reminds us that one of the reasons we are unique is because we can choose to create something new from the old. It is time to create our own unique song, if we do not have one, and it is time to strengthen it, if we do.

Lyrebird is an excellent animal energy for assisting, triggering or strengthening the ability to channel. Lyrebird lets other voices move through us, if we allow it. This might come through in the ability of mimicry, or in the spirit world, it may come through in the form of other spirits and people, and even animal energies wishing to communicate through our own voice. Try ‘speaking’ out loud, what your spirit helpers and animal energy guides are saying to you. Even try recording it, so you can play it back to yourself later. Sometimes a greater wisdom is found when we speak what we are being taught from the spirit, and lyrebird suggests it is time to do this in our lives.

There is a strong aspect of truth to lyrebird’s energy. Lyrebird teaches us how to release our true voice, or the voice which – though ever changing – communicates who we really are, and what we really feel at any one time. If you encourage lyrebird energy into your life, it will herald a time when you will come to find it easier to say what you really ‘mean’ to other people, and where they will be better able to understand that. Lyrebird energy is excellent for shy people, because it is gentle, and helps you to say what you mean without having to compromise your own shy nature.

Lyrebird reminds us to keep our sacred spaces clean, and also to get rid of clutter! Lyrebird tells us that a cluttered altar, shrine, dressing table etc. doesn’t help spirits to communicate clear messages to us. Likewise, lyrebird encourages us to stop hoarding, and to start throwing out things we no longer need. A clean and clear space encourages a better flow of energy, and a more profound sense of silence in our own living spaces. Take this further, if you like, and start ‘cleaning’ up your mental spaces too. If you are lacking discipline at this time in your life, lyrebird – a very clean animal – will help you to find it.

The Shadow Aspects:

When the shadow energy of lyrebird comes into your life, it suggests that you are having problems letting your ‘true voice’ out. You may be so disconnected from your real feelings that you may have no idea if you even have a true voice (you do, don’t worry). You may resent, fear or even hate your true voice because of insecurity. Lyrebird asks you to confront any issues you may have with your true voice and to set it free despite your fears.

Lyrebird also confronts issues you may have with ‘listening.’ We might not want to listen to others because we feel we ourselves are never ‘heard.’ Alternatively we might listen too much and resent the time we never take for ourselves. Learning how to create a positive relationship with the act of listening will enable your life to become more rewarding.


Like all animal helpers, this animal will only appear when right and appropriate, and cannot be forced to visit you, commune with you, or share messages with you. Vocal forms of communication, via instruments or our own voice, are all very successful ways to commune and encourage the energy of lyrebird into our lives. Consider evoking the energy through mimicry, what animals can you copy? What accents are you good at?

You can also consider evocation by clearing a ‘sacred space’ (even if only temporary) in your home, and keep it clean. Perhaps post up a picture or drawing of lyrebird to encourage the energy into this space. Lyrebird is drawn, in my own experience, to clean spaces that it can call its own. Lyrebird has a beguiling and often secretive character, it is also often a very gentle energy, and can be excellent guides for those people who are shy and have problems communicating with others.