NATIONAL SYMBOLS
  National flag
  Symbolism

  The national flag was designed by a former South African State Herald, Mr Fred Brownell, and was   first used on 27 April 1994. The design and colours are a synopsis of principal elements of the country's flag history. Individual colours, or colour combinations represent different meanings for different people and therefore no universal symbolism should be attached to any of the colours. The central design of the flag, beginning at the flagpost in a 'V' form and flowing into a single horizontal band to the outer edge of the fly, can be interpreted as the convergence of diverse elements within South African society, taking the road ahead in unity. The theme of convergence and unity ties in with the motto Unity is Strength of the previous South African Coat of Arms. Specific instructions with regard to the use of the national flag can be found in the Government Gazette 22356, Notice 510 of 8 June 2001 [PDF].
  National Coat of Arms
  The role of a Coat of Arms

  A national Coat of Arms, or state emblem, is the highest visual symbol of the State. The Coat of Arms is   also a central part of the Great Seal, traditionally considered to be the highest emblem of the State.   Absolute authority is given to every document with an impression of the Great Seal on it, as this means   that it has been approved by the President of South Africa. South Africa’s Coat of Arms was launched on Freedom Day, 27 April 2000. The change reflected government's aim to highlight the democratic change in South Africa and a new sense of patriotism.
  National Animal
  Springbuck/springbok - Antidorcas marsupialis

  Typical of this species is the pronk (jumping display), which led to its common name. Both sexes   have horns but those of the ram are thicker and rougher. This species has adapted to the dry, barren areas and open grass plains and is thus found especially in the Free State, North West province and in the Karoo up to the west coast. They are herd animals and move in small herds during winter, but often crowd together in bigger herds in summer. They eat both grass and leaves and can go without drinking-water, because they get enough moisture from the succulent leaves. Where drinking-water is available they will use it. Springbuck stand 75 cm high and weigh about 40 kg. They breed throughout the year and lambs are born after a 6-month gestation period.
  National Bird
  Blue crane - Anthropoides paradisia

  This elegant crane, that stands about one meter high, is almost entirely restricted to South Africa in its distribution. The blue crane is a light blue-grey, has a long neck supporting a rather bulbous head, long legs and elegant wing plumes which sweep to the ground. It eats seeds, insects and reptiles. Blue cranes lay their eggs in the bare veld, often close to water. They are quite common in the Karoo, but are also seen in the grasslands of KwaZulu-Natal and the highveld, usually in pairs or small family parties. The blue crane has a distinctive rattling croak, fairly high-pitched at call, which can be heard from far away. It is, however, usually quiet.
  National Fish
  Galjoen - Coracinus capensis

  The galjoen is found only along the South African coast. It keeps to mostly shallow water, is often   found in rough surf and sometimes right next to the shore and is known to every angler. Near rocks, the colour of the galjoen is almost completely black, while in sandy areas the colour is silver-bronze. It is also known in KwaZulu-Natal as blackfish or black bream. The record size is over 55 cm and 7 kg, however the average is much smaller. The galjoen is a game fighter.
  National Flower
  Giant or king protea - Protea cynaroides

  The giant or king protea is widely distributed in the south-western and southern areas of the Western   Cape, from the Cedarberg up to just east of Grahamstown. The artichoke-like appearance of the   flower-heads of the king protea lead to the specific name ‘cynaroides’, which means ‘like cynara’ (the   artichoke). The name does not do justice to the beautiful flower-heads of this protea, which is the largest in the genus. A number of varieties in colour and leaf shapes are found, but the most beautiful is the pink coloured flower.
  National Tree
  Real yellowwood - Podocarpus latifolius

  The yellowwood family is primeval and has been present in this part of Africa for more than 100 million years. The species is widespread and is found from Table Mountain, along the southern and eastern Cape coast, in the ravines of the Drakensberg up to the Soutpansberg and the Blouberg in Limpopo. In forests, they can grow up to 40 metres in height with the base of the trunk sometimes up to 3 metres in diameter.
National Anthem:
  This is the official version of the national anthem, combines Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika and Die Stem/The Call of South   Africa.

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