Much maligned, Ibis are almost ubiquitous in parts of Australia. These birds are very similar in appearance to the sacred Egyptian Ibis. Three species are found in Australia, the Straw-necked Ibis being the most common and unique to this country. To agriculturalists, ibises are regarded as one of the most useful and valuable of birds due to the large quantities of crop-damaging grasshoppers and other insects they consume. They are also fond of human scraps and, like seagulls, may be a common sight scavenging at a bin, park or dump.
These wary birds may be seen in flocks numbering thousands or, alternatively, foraging alone. The order also includes the spoonbill, which is identifiable by its beak. Sociable birds, Ibis often feed and nest side-by-side with other species in the family, except during courtship when they prefer privacy. Some appear to be very dirty and shabby, while others seem more clean and immaculate.
Themes around personal beliefs, spirituality and purity may be questioned and examined, if Ibis has struck your life with an impact. Will you live up to your ideals? Although common, Ibis can be a beautiful affirmation of your spiritual identity, and a reminder to regularly take a dip in the stream of your consciousness – especially if things seem drab. Are your thoughts in common with the larger group, or are you presently foraging alone for sustenance? It may be time to take another path and change your pattern. If you are prone to solitude, then meet with others, and vice versa. This bird is a good symbol to place where you can see it (i.e. a feather, drawing or photograph), especially if you think these special birds are rather dowdy and common or relate to their more mystical meaning. Divine beauty beneath the grot, that’s Ibis.
If you see a flock of Ibis flying in v-formation, be aware of your own personal direction and ability to lead or direct. Like the point in the v, you can move forward, knowing the support of others is behind you. A symbol of victory and leadership, keep up a winner’s attitude!
Click here for a hilarious take on ibis by Bondi Hipsters. (Language warning!)