Duck – Spirit Animal, Totem, Symbolism and Meaning

Even though we use the name duck for a single bird, this term actually covers several species of birds on our planet. Ducks can be divided into several subfamilies in the family Anatidae. These aquatic birds have been a part of our lives for centuries. Even though people mostly used them for food, they still had a significant value in a symbolic sense as well.

In the past, people knew that they relied on animals for survival, so it is no wonder we paid much more attention to them than we do know (even though we are still dependent on them). Animal symbolism carries a deeper message to all of us and encourages us to get more in touch with nature.

Just when we think that we are so different from animals and nature around us, we actually see that there is a lot we can learn from them. Animals might have a simpler behavior than us, but their instincts are same as ours and we all strive to survive. If you ever wanted to learn more about duck symbolism and whether the duck is your totem or spirit animal, then this is your change.

Spirit Animal and Totem

Spirit animals and totems are our guiding forces. We can learn a lot about ourselves and about our character by learning more about our animal totem and spirit animal. Their presence in our lives is far greater than we think and we can rely on their help in any occasion.

If you ever wondered how to determine your spirit animal, then you need to look at your life and see which animal has been your faithful friend and guiding light. Our spirit animals also show up in our dreams and during meditation, because their goal is to guide us in the right direction and teach us something.

Totem animal is determined by your birth date and it teaches you about the characteristics of your personality and the way the world sees you. We can teach ourselves to use our positive sides better and control the negative ones.

Spirit animal

As a spirit animal, duck is best described by these words:

  • Family
  • Mysticism
  • Opportunities
  • Grace
  • Energy
  • Comfort
  • Emotional strength
  • Self-expression
  • Reconnection
  • Protection and
  • Living in the moment.

People guided by the duck spirit animal are family people who like to have the people they love around them. Long distance relationship or moving faraway from family home is not something they are up to. Instead, they love to be close to their parents and have a lot of children. We can safely say that these people love having big families and keeping their life in a stable position without a lot of turbulence.

People guided by the duck spirit animal are also living in the moment. They don’t think too much about tomorrow, they instead like to be focused on the present and enjoy it. Duck spirit animal teaches us how to be aware of good things that are happening in our lives and to worry less about the future.

If duck is your spirit animal, then you are very protective of the people you love and you like to keep them safe. Nothing and no one can hurt them, if they are by your side. Taking risks is not something you like doing, so people often comment on you being a very secure person. Because of this, they trust you and feel like they can tell you almost anything.

Graceful ducks teach us about always being graceful in life and how to keep our manners in all situations. You never let anger take over your behavior and you are always controlling it. In most cases, you are able to do this, but sometimes you slip and let your “ugly” face to the surface. To those who have betrayed you or mad you feel bad, this is going to be hell.

Ducks are also symbols of mysticism and emotional strength. Their power lies in their ability to stay grounded in all situations and to overcome difficulties in life without breaking down. People around you feel like they know you, but there is always something that surprises them about you. Instead of revealing everything to the world, you keep the deepest darkest secrets to yourself and never bring them to the light.


As a totem, duck makes you a great person to be around, very communicative and outgoing. You love laughing and making other people happy. Being a social person makes you a pleasure to be around in the workplace as well. You tend to cooperate with other people well and this is why promotion is always something that is meant for you. You love keeping good relationships with your family members as well. Having your friends and family members close is what makes you happy, so constant change is not something you are good at.

Staying in your comfort zone is another thing that can be both positive and negative. Sometimes it is much easier to do only the things you are used to, but on the other hand you never get to experience the true nature of life and the adventurous side of it. Since you are great with people and caring as well, careers like Psychologist and Therapist are something you excel at. As a negative characteristic, some might mention your tendency to hide things from them. Even though you love listening to other people, they sometimes feel like you are not completely honest with them and like they don’t know you that well.

Symbolism and Meaning

Ducks are no longer just food sources. Even back in days when people used to use them as one of the main food sources, they still respected them and worshipped them. In some countries, cultures worshipped ducks more than in others.

In China especially, ducks were symbols of partnership and community. To them, it was fascinating how ducks always stayed together and followed their partners through thick and thin. Besides having partner on their side, ducks love having a big community around them and this is the only way they feel complete. Because of this fact, in China, ducks were gifted to newlyweds to promote lifelong happiness in love and couple happiness in general. Mandarin ducks are symbols of odd couples in Cantonese and in Chinese art. To Koreans, ducks were symbols of peace and offspring. Gifting someone a duck, meant you wanted this person or couple to succeed in their attempt to have offspring.

In Celtic culture, duck symbolizes resourcefulness and simple nature. In some parts of Celtic culture, duck was also a symbol of honesty and truthfulness. Native Americans saw ducks as symbols of gullible nature and naïve characters in people. To money tribes, ducks were clan animals and totem animals that protected them and gave them directions through spiritual guidance. Some of these tribes were the Menominee and Chippewa tribes.

Today, ducks might be a little bit undervalued but they still have important symbolic meaning. Ducks are often used as mascots for sports teams and also as characters in popular TV shows and in cartoons. Probably the most iconic one of all is Donald Duck, a cartoon character created by the magnificent Walt Disney.

Duck tattoos are also popular and they have the same symbolic meaning as ducks in general. People, who want to express parts of their character or what is important for them, such as family, community, grace and protection, usually choose the duck tattoo and place it forever on their bodies.

Dreams about Ducks

Seeing a duck – This dream is a symbol of trouble and you need to be attentive. When you see a duck it means you are about to experience something unpleasant on your workplace or in private life. This dream warns you about your tendency to stick your nose into things that are not your concern. Perhaps it is for the best to stay focused on your own problems.

Duck in water – If duck in your dream was swimming in water, then you are about to have an important conversation with someone. This conversation might set the course for the rest of your life, so make sure you play your cards right.

Eating a duck – This common dream symbolizes sadness. Sadness in your life will be the consequence of bad communication with people you care about. You won’t be able to send your message in the right way, which might agitate others a lot.

Feeding ducks – Feeding ducks in your dream is a symbol of happiness. You can expect something positive to happen to you in the upcoming period that might be related to love and relationships.


Ducks might seem like common birds with nothing interesting to offer, but the truth is they have a very strong symbolic meaning. They are strong symbols of family, grace, energy, communication and community.

People used them to express their wishes to others and to send a message of support. For hundreds of years, ducks were symbols of love and companionship, that can’t be broken by anything.