Owl hooting meaning: Spiritual Significance, Symbolism and more

Jovana Petrovic
12 Min Read
owl hooting meaning

Why does an owl make the hooting noise?

Some cultures across the world believe the hoot of an owl is a sign of bad luck or death.

While others think it is prosperity or good fortune. Some cultures believe them as the bringer of good luck, while some associate them with occult practices.

The true answer to this question is based on your several spiritual and cultural interpretations. 

What most people don’t know is that not all owls make the same hooting noises. There are different types of owls living among us, and each has its unique characteristics and personalities. 

Like all animals, owls also mark their territory. They let it known to other owls by making a hooting sound. Sometimes, they also make hooting noises to attract their mate. 

In some cases, they also make the noise to warn humans of any possible threats. For example, an owl will let you know if they notice any potential threats nearby.

The bad omen associated with owl’s hooting is generally an accumulation of cultural-based fear over centuries. For example, in medieval times, people used to believe that witches could transform themselves into owls at night. That’s why people used to drive off and even kill them. 

Some species of owls are even categorized as critically endangered due to loss of habitat and senseless human persecution.

The Symbolism of Owl’s Hooting in Different Culture

Role of owl and its hooting in various religion and culture:

owl hooting meaning native american

Native Americans

Owls were often treated as fearful by many Native American tribes. Since they were often seen at night, their arrival was considered supernatural and death. Their hooting was associated with misfortune and the presence of evil spirits and ghosts. 


Owls signify destitution and desolation in Christianity. In Jeremiah 50:39, the owl is cited as a symbol of sorrow, loneliness, and despair.

In Leviticus 11:16-17 and Deuteronomy 14:15-16, the owl is considered an unclean bird that is forbidden to be eaten by the Israelites. Since they are prohibited from consumption, people see them as an embodiment of impurity and evil.

The owl is seen as a creature living in the ruins of Babylon, a city destroyed by the Gods as a form of punishment due to wickedness. An owl is also described as the companion of the Jackal, which is associated with wilderness, darkness and emptiness, as stated in Job 30:29. 

Ancient Greece

Owls were considered sacred and the symbol of Athena, the goddess of Wisdom. If an owl flew over Greek soldiers before a war, it was considered that they were going to win the war. 

An owl hoot in ancient Greece was considered a sign of Wisdom, protection and good fortune.

Ancient Rome

Owls were companions of the Roman Goddess of Wisdom, Minerva. However, their hooting was considered a bad omen, signifying imminent death.

In fact, according to mythology, an owl was the foreteller of the death of most Roman soldiers, including Julius Caesar and Augustus. 

It was a common Roman superstition to nail a dead owl on the door to keep evil away from home.


People from some parts of Appalachia used to be terrified of Owls, especially during one time of year. It was believed that during the Samhain night (a festival), the barrier between the physical and spiritual world became thin. 

The thin barrier of both worlds allows dead souls to come back to their homes in the physical realm. So, according to some folktale, owls use that night to prey on these wandering souls by snatching them from thin air and eating them in their nests.


Mayans believe that the night, darkness, and death are all interconnected with each other. As owls hunt at night, it is considered a messenger of the underworld and a manifestation of the god of death. 

An owl’s hoot or screech signifies death or the passing of lost souls in Mayan mythology and culture.


In Hinduism, the significance and symbolism of an owl’s hoot are based on its color. 

For instance, white owls are known to accompany Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth. So, seeing a white owl or listening to the hoot of a white owl is considered lucky. It also signifies a sign of prosperity. 

Brown owls are considered a sign of harmony. According to the scriptures of Sage Narada, the sage was advised to learn music from an owl.

The Hoot of the Owl was considered musical in ancient Hinduism and known to contribute to four popular melodies.  

Black owls, on the other hand, are considered as a bad omen or death. Their hoot is considered as a sign of someone’s dying around you.

spiritual meaning of an owl hooting

What is the spiritual significance of an owl’s hoot?

Owls hold a high position in the spiritual realm. They play a strong role in synchronicity, which is linking the physical world with the divine realm. An owl hooting could mean a sign of a new beginning. The beginning could come in the form of wisdom. Maybe you are about to have a spiritual awakening that could open various doors of opportunities in the future.

What does it mean if an owl hoots at me?

An owl is considered a bird with highly spiritual knowledge, and it can travel between realms. An owl hooting at you could indicate a spiritual awakening resulting in something new happening in your life. 

The timing of the hooting also matters. For instance, if the owl hoots at you during daytime (which is rare), it could mean they are offering their Wisdom to you. 

If it happens at night, it could mean they are trying to protect you. For example, they are warning you of an impending danger and warning you to stay cautious. 

What does it mean when an owl hoots at 3 a.m.?

It is believed that the veil of the world and the spirit realms get very thin during 2-4 a.m. This makes it easier for spirits to communicate their messages from one side to another. This is the best time to ask your guardian angel or the universe for guidance. 

Since owls are considered the messengers of both worlds, seeing an owl between 2-4 a.m. is a good chance for you to pray for the universe’s blessing. 

When you see or hear an owl hooting, you can do the following:

  • Close your eyes
  • Ask the universe whatever you wish to manifest
  • Pray the owl to deliver your message to the universe. 

For instance, you can ask your guardian angel to come and guide you during your bad days.

What does it mean when you see an owl hooting in your dream?

owl hooting dream meaning

The dream is considered the mirror of the other world, while owls as the messenger.

Seeing an owl in your dream could mean there is a message for you from the divine realm. It could mean your guardian angel is trying to communicate with you, but you are not able to get the message.

In such situations, what you can do is look for signs of angel numbers. This is because the universe often communicates with you through angel numbers.

For example, try to remember the time when you dreamt of the owl.

Also, try to remember if you are seeing the same pattern of numbers frequently. This could be your angel number.

Once you find your angel number, you can decode the message the universe is trying to send you.


What does it mean when an Owl Hoots while you are going to work?

An owl hooting at you while you are on your way to work signifies good luck. Owl is associated with wealth, abundance and victory in many cultures. It could mean that all those hours of effort are finally going to pay off. The victory here could also represent a legal victory as well. Are you going through a legal battle? The hoot of an owl could mean you are about to succeed in this challenge.

What does it mean when an owl hoots during a stormy night?

An owl hooting on a stormy night is more of a sign of warning than a bad omen. Owls are intuitive creatures who can easily detect potential dangers in your surroundings. There are even instances with ground owls predicting the weather for Southwest Florida.

Is seeing an owl bad luck?

Owls are the bringer of big changes in life, and sometimes it could mean bad news. This is why some cultures perceive them as bad luck. However, such changes are often necessary for a person to attain personal and spiritual growth. This is because most people get stuck in their life playing the same role forever. Without taking the necessary steps to change yourself, you are only hurting the soul inside you. For example, maybe you are still stuck in a loveless marriage that you believed was over for years. However, you are too scared of change and trying what the universe has stored for you. The owl, in some instances, can bring spiritual energy that empowers you to take the decision that is necessary. Therefore, some believe owl as bad luck, while those who have real experience knows they are just a gift of the universe.

Does owls bring death?

Owls are often associated with death as they are often sighted at graveyards. You will find may folklores that includes stories and legends about owls and death. However, a death doesn’t mean physical death only. Spiritually, owls represents change, rebirth, and transformation. 

As owls are associated with wisdom, intelligence and intuition, seeing an owl is considered as the death of ego, and selfishness. They are believed to squash your negative attributes and makes you a higher version of yourself.

Share this Article
Jovana Petrovic is a writer, holistic tarot reader, and traditional Western astrologer. She possesses clairaudient and clairvoyant abilities, which she uses to help others tap into their purpose, release old patterns, and realize their fullest potential. Her practice blends intuitive guidance with psychic tools, knowledge, and experience. As a graduate Pedagogist and spirituality enthusiast, Jovana uses her expertise to help people navigate through their spiritual awakening and heal their inner child. Besides tarot and astrology, she practices incorporating shadow work, self-love techniques, and chakra healing.