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National Symbols of the Philippines with Images

Updated on December 12, 2010

The Philippines is an archipelago composed of more than 7,000 islands. Its composition dictates the complexity of the Filipino people. We have nearly 2 dozens ethnic and tribal groups. One animal, plant, or object is not enough to represent this fair land of ours we call home.



If the Philippines is forced to choose only one national symbol, the Haribon would be it. A majestic and totally awesome king of the skies, no grander vessel for our spirit will we ever find. For the record, monkeys form only a minor part of the Haribon's diet. Fact, the giant bird eat more lemurs than monkeys so monkey-eating-eagle is a misnomer. Haribon (short for Haring Ibon or King of the Birds) is a more fitting title.

I once endured a 2-day hike in a deep, dark forest somewhere along the boundary of Agusan Del Sur and Bukidnon to confirm a nesting site. The hardship I endured was rewarded with the glimpse of an eaglet tottering along the branches of a huge Lauan tree at the edge of a clearing. I hope that eaglet has already staked his own claim of the Philippine skies.

BTW, this top gun predator is also internationally known as THE Philippine Eagle. Alas, due to the dwindling forests it needs to survive, it is already a critically endangered species with only 400 or  found in the wild. Charles Lindbergh (Yep, The Lone Eagle himself) started the ball rolling on protecting this national treasure.



Slow, plodding, and unrelenting under the heat of the sun, the carabao is a symbol of our indomitable spirit. This docile beast has helped Filipino farmers feed our nation for centuries. A slowpoke it may be, but those who have witnessed a rampaging carabao knew that this beast can sow unstoppable terror if pushed to its limit.



I was not too keen in including this fish in this list. It is bland, wallows in chicken shit, live in cages and paddies (like prisons), and is reared in artificial condition for slaughter. Even its common name is sort of uninspiring -- milkfish. I would have preferred the barracuda for our national fish and there's a lot of them patrolling our seas. However, since one of my teachers back in elementary school said that it is our national fish, then here it is.

The only thing badass I can say about this fish is its bony flesh (tiny needle-like slivers). Even dead and cooked, it can still cause a lot of pain if we are not careful.


Anahaw leaves being prepared as a backdrop for flower arrangements.
Anahaw leaves being prepared as a backdrop for flower arrangements. | Source

Anahaw is the general term given by Filipinos to plants of a certain palm genus. The anahaw leaf is fan-shaped, ranging from tiny fans to huge fans big enough to form 1 umbrella. The anahaw is ubiquitous in Philippine culture. The leaves are used to make hand fans, salakot (a wide-brimmed hat), and as roofing material for our native huts. It is also popular as a decorative palm.

Now, I am truly proud of this plant. It is versatile, useful, and badass! I have seen 10-meter tall  sample of this species and the fronds/leaves are awesome. The stalks of each leaf are lined with pointy, triangular, toothy spines along each side. If you've seen shark teeth, that's how they look, except they're black.


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      jose 4 years ago

      are you aware of that? haha

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      gadiel naz 4 years ago

      it is not a phlippine eagle

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      keith 4 years ago

      Kulang it is enough

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      Malabanan Alyssa Mae 4 years ago

      What can I say ba ?...ahmm. ,maganda naman ung pagkakagawa pero hindi lang talaga maganda ung background ng bangus and super konti lang...dapat lahat ng symbols andito...pero to shorten I love it! :)

    • profile image

      LOUIE LERONA 5 years ago

      DAGDAGAN NYO PA SANA PARA may malaman pa silang iba.

    • profile image

      sweet blueberry 5 years ago

      wait parang konti lang to. . . . Pero tama ka Annonimous

    • profile image

      sweetblueberry 5 years ago

      wait. . . why is this few only??

    • profile image

      Annonimous 5 years ago

      bakit naman binababoy ninyo ang ating pambansang isda? sana kung i post ninyo ito, ay nasa maganda ang background or nasa palaisdaan naman, tingnan nyo parang ganun ka baboy ang filipino ang nilatagan ng bangus ay mga basu pa.

    • profile image

      Real Jessica Gail villaruel 5 years ago

      Cnu ba ang nanggagamit ng aking pangalan , ako po si Jessica totoo .. Digilan Niyo nga ang pag gamit ng pangalan ko ..

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      may 5 years ago

      sana bago ipinost ang bangus na national symbol pa naman,sana maganda naman ang background hindi basura.

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      true jessica gail villaruel 6 years ago

      kng sino man nag gamit nang pangalan ko sa coment nayan please lang pki erase ka si hindi nman ako nag lagay nyan eh o baka may galit sa akin kaya ginamit ang pangalan ko dyan sa coment

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      jessica gail villaruel 6 years ago

      bkt apat lng parang kulng nman ka c ang daming national symbols tapos apat lng ung linagay ipa paano ung mga nag reresearch lalo na ung may mga project pag ganon klang ung project nla mali pa sila katulad ko nag research nalang ako sa ibang national symbols sorry ha kng maganda ung coment nag iba tapos ung akin pangit sorry pro sa totoo nagsasabi lng ako ng totoo

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      pennyofheaven 7 years ago from New Zealand

      I love the way you write. Thanks!