The red-tailed hawk is considered a power animal in Native American culture, and its feathers are believed to be sacred. Red-tailed hawk feathers adorn Native American headdresses and are often used as a symbol in religious ceremonies and sacred rituals. Red-tailed hawk feathers were often rewarded to ancient warriors as a symbol of bravery. The red hawk is considered a messenger and symbolizes strength and guardianship. A common belief in many cultures is that when a single feather appears in an unusual place, it is a message from a spirit guide or angel.