The flag of Palau was adopted on January 1, 1981, when the archipelago decided to separate from the territory of the Pacific Islands and it was proclaimed a republic under the protection of the United States. The flag is composed of a pale blue sheet and a yellow circle centered slightly toward the left side of the flag. When the flag is hung it creates an impression that the circle is located right in the center of the flag. The blue color symbolizes the Pacific Ocean that surrounds the islands and the yellow circle allegedly resembles the full moon, which is an important period for the islanders. They believe that activities such as fishing, planting, and harvesting are much more effective during this moon-phase.