Bird Idioms

Bird idioms are a fascinating aspect of the English language. They are expressions that use birds as a metaphor for various human emotions, behaviors, and situations. They can also help you express complex ideas in a simple and concise wayIn this article, we will explore some of the most common bird idioms used in English and their meanings.

List of Bird Idioms in English

  • (Bird in a) Gilded (Golden) Cage
  • A Home Bird
  • A Rare Bird
  • A Little Bird Told Me
  • Birds of A Feather
  • Bird’s-Eye View
  • Early Bird
  • Kill Two Birds with One Stone
  • Night Owl
  • A Lame Duck
  • A Sitting Duck
  • Fox In The Henhouse (Chicken house)
  • Get One’s Ducks in a Row
  • Sitting Duck
  • Ugly Duckling
  • Swan Song
  • Eagle-Eyed
  • Feather One’s Nest
  • Flew The Coop
  • He Would Put Legs Under A Chicken
  • Sick As A Parrot
  • What’s Good for the Goose Is Good for the Gander
  • Wild Goose Chase
  • Eat Crow

BIRD Idioms

Bird Idioms with Meaning & Examples

List of bird idioms in English with meaning and example sentences.

(Bird in a) Gilded (Golden) Cage

  • Meaning: To live a luxurious life, but lack independence and freedom.
  • Example: Jake was never happy in his golden cage.

A Home Bird

  • Meaning: Someone who prefers to stay at home rather than going out.
  • Example: My sister is a home bird. She rarely goes out on weekends.

A Rare Bird

  • Meaning: An unusual or exceptional person or thing.
  • Example: She’s a rare bird, a scientist who is also an accomplished musician.

A Little Bird Told Me

  • Meaning: To have heard a secret from an unknown source.
  • Example: A little bird told me that the company is going to lay off some employees.

Birds of A Feather

  • Meaning: People who have similar interests, characteristics, or backgrounds.
  • Example: They say birds of a feather flock together. That’s why they’re such good friends.

Bird’s-Eye View

  • Meaning: A view from above.
  • Example: From the top of the mountain, we had a bird’s-eye view of the valley below.

Early Bird

  • Meaning: Someone who wakes up or starts work early.
  • Example: My dad is an early bird. He wakes up at 5 am every day.

Kill Two Birds with One Stone

  • Meaning: To accomplish two things at once.
  • Example: By going to the grocery store on my way home, I can kill two birds with one stone.

Night Owl

  • Meaning: Someone who stays up late at night.
  • Example: She’s a night owl and often works late into the night.

A Lame Duck

  • Meaning: A person or thing that is weak or ineffective.
  • Example: The current CEO is seen as a lame duck, unable to make any significant changes.

A Sitting Duck

  • Meaning: Someone or something that is easy to attack or harm.
  • Example: Without any security measures, our website is a sitting duck for hackers.

Fox In The Henhouse (Chicken house)

  • Meaning: Someone who is a threat or danger to a group or organization.
  • Example: We need to be careful about who we hire. We don’t want a fox in the henhouse.

Get One’s Ducks in a Row

  • Meaning: To get organized and prepared.
  • Example: Before starting the project, we need to get our ducks in a row.

Ugly Duckling

  • Meaning: Someone or something that is unattractive or unappealing at first but becomes beautiful or successful later.
  • Example: She was an ugly duckling in high school but became a successful model later in life.

Swan Song

  • Meaning: A final act or performance before retirement or death.
  • Example: The concert was his swan song before he retired from music.

Eagle-Eyed

  • Meaning: Someone who is very observant and pays attention to detail.
  • Example: The editor is eagle-eyed and never misses a typo.

Feather One’s Nest

  • Meaning: To use one’s position or power to gain personal wealth or advantage.
  • Example: The politician was accused of feathering his own nest by accepting bribes.

Flew The Coop

  • Meaning: To leave or escape from a place or situation.
  • Example: After graduating, she flew the coop and moved to New York City.

He Would Put Legs Under A Chicken

  • Meaning: To be very active or energetic.
  • Example: He’s so full of energy, he would put legs under a chicken.

Sick As A Parrot

  • Meaning: To be very disappointed or upset.
  • Example: He was sick as a parrot when he found out he didn’t get the job.

What’s Good for the Goose Is Good for the Gander

  • Meaning: What is good for one person is good for another.
  • Example: If he gets a raise, I should too. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.

Wild Goose Chase

  • Meaning: A search or pursuit that is pointless or fruitless.
  • Example: The police were on a wild goose chase, looking for a suspect who had already left the country.

Eat Crow

  • Meaning: To admit that you were wrong and apologize.
  • Example: After the project failed, the manager had to eat crow and apologize to the team.

Cultural Significance of Bird Idioms

Bird idioms are not just phrases that are used to describe certain situations. They also reflect the cultural significance of birds in different societies. In this section, we will explore some of the cultural significance of bird idioms in Western and Eastern cultures.

Western Culture

In Western culture, birds have been used as symbols of freedom, peace, and hope. This is reflected in many bird idioms that are commonly used in English. For example, the idiom “free as a bird” is used to describe someone who is completely free and unrestricted. Similarly, the phrase “a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush” is used to describe the idea that it is better to have something that is certain, rather than taking a risk for something that may not be as valuable.

Birds have also been used in Western literature and art as symbols of beauty and grace. For example, the peacock is often used to represent beauty, while the dove is a symbol of peace. These symbols are reflected in many bird idioms, such as “proud as a peacock” and “lovebirds”.

Eastern Culture

In Eastern culture, birds have been used as symbols of good luck, prosperity, and happiness. For example, in Chinese culture, the crane is a symbol of longevity and good fortune. The phoenix is also a symbol of rebirth and immortality. These symbols are reflected in many bird idioms, such as “crane’s legs” (a Chinese idiom for long legs) and “phoenix rising from the ashes”.

Birds have also been used in Eastern literature and art as symbols of beauty and spirituality. For example, in Japanese culture, the crane is a symbol of beauty and grace. The nightingale is also a symbol of love and longing. These symbols are reflected in many bird idioms, such as “nightingale floor” (a Japanese idiom for a floor that squeaks like a nightingale’s song).