The aswang is a creature from Philippine folklore and is featured in many myths and stories of that culture. Other names for the aswang are, tik-tik, wak-wak, bal-bal, and sok-sok. It was also the most feared of the mythical creatures dating back to the sixteenth century.

The aswang is described as a combination of a vampire and a werewolf with bloodshot eyes. However, no definite characteristic can be established with the variety of stories and descriptions reported, but there are some common attributes.

Some say they are a shape shifter that live as a shy and quiet human during the day, but transform into other creatures at night, frequently a dog. They eat unborn fetuses and small children’s hearts and livers. Some are described as having a long appendage extending from the head for sucking the fetuses from the mother’s womb.

Some are said to be so thin they can hide behind small posts. They are also considered to be silent and quick. However, one trait of the tik-tik, which is also the sound it makes, is the further away it is the noisier it becomes. This is to confuse the victim.

Another activity some aswang’s perform is to replace their victim with a replica made from plant material and when it returns, it will become sick and die. The bal-bal version of the aswang will replace its victim with banana trunks.

Image Caption: Illustration in Carmilla, Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu’s vampire story. Credit: David Henry Friston/Wikipedia (public domain)