5 Fantastical Filipino Creatures and Where to Find Them
In a lot of mythologies in the world, different regions and places can be the home of the many mysterious and otherworldly creatures from legend. It may be that they were native to the land before man began occupying it or there may be other mysterious, unexplained reasons why they are there.
The Philippines itself has a list of interesting creatures that hang around some of their islands and provinces. Let’s take a look at some of them:
Found in: Abra, Apayao and Ilocos Norte
Between the mountain ranges of Abra, river-filled Apayao and the tourist garnering Ilocos Norte is a story of a devious water creature. The Berberoka are cunning and crafty water ogres that love to drown humans in their swamps or lakes. They do this by sucking up the bodies of water until the fish are visible and struggling slightly at the bottom to attract attention. The humans unfortunate enough to take the bait are suddenly flooded with the withdrawn water. Once drowned, the monster would devour the body. In some incarnations of these creatures, they are said to be afraid of crabs.
Found in: Mt. Kanlaon, Negros Occidental
Mt. Kanlaon, one of the most majestic of the volcanoes in the Pacific Ring of Fire. It has become a popular place for mountain climbers to visit despite its active status. But mountain climbers arent the only humanoids said to be found in the area. The Amomongo is a white ape told to live in a cave at the base of the mountain. It usually eats only the bowels of certain animals, using its sharp claws to scrape them out. This creature is the Philippines equivalent of Bigfoot, and is equally shrouded in great mystery as well.
Found in: Cagayan, Isabela and Nueva Vizcaya
The three provinces are home to the Ibanag people, the few ethnolinguist minority still within the Philippines. They only number to half a million as of today. But tales from the older generation of these tribes speak of the Sarangay, a half man, half bull creature. This being is very protective of its habitat and uses its great strength, scary appearance and sharp horns to ward off invaders in its habitat. This monster was said to have a jewel hanging from its ears that was said to have strange powers. Whoever stole it was destined for a gory death. The Sarangay is said to be similar, if not related, to the Minotaur of legends and tales in Greece.
Found in: sightings in Roxas City, Capiz
Roxas city is considered one of Panay Island's center of education, trade, economic activity and logistics. But even a quaint, place like this is without its share of strange creatures. There lives the Sigbin, a peculiar monster with multiple features based on eyewitness accounts. Some people say its a beast the size of a small bear, spikes lining the back of its neck all the way to the tail. Other accounts say it’s like a hornless kangaroo-goat. But whichever description they give, there is always a mention of flapping ears, burning red eyes, whip like tail and the backwards-walking ability. The victims of this creature, small farm animals, were said to either be beheaded or have deep puncture wounds in its neck.
Found in: Catanauan, Quezon
Catanuan is a first class municipality in the Quezon province. It is a hilly expanse with some mountains and isolated flatlands. It is here that people whisper about the Bal Bal, known to the natives as the maninilong. A mysterious scavenging beast, this creature was especially fond of the scent and taste of dead human bodies. Using their intense sense of smell they would scurry around cemeteries and nightly funerals, digging and pulling the dead out with their long, sharp claws. It has a cloying scent that lingers in the air and uses hypnosis to make family and friends at funerals sleepy. The Bal Bal would replaced the consumed dead with a banana tree trunk made to look like the deceased.
Are you ready to go creature hunting for these mysterious and spooky creatures? Grab your backpack and a guide to see for yourself!