Like the Manobo, the Negrito groups of the Philippines constitute one of the most complex populations in terms of dispersal. There are two major branches which made their appearance in the Philippine archipelago between 30,000 to 20,000 years ago: one moving on the eastern flank of the Philippines going up to the north to the Pacific side of the Sierra Madre mountains constituting the Alta, Arta, and Agta groups; the second branch moved along the western side, similarly going up northern Luzon which now includes the Pinatubo Negrito. Other corresponding major subgroupings are the Dumagat, Ata, Ati, Atta, Sinauna, and Batak. The people are characterized by shortness of stature, darkness of pigmentation, and kinky hair. All of the Negrito groups speak languages that are dialects of the major adjacent peoples.

       They are now widely distributed and found in highland areas or places that are difficult to access: the Pacific side of northern Luzon to the Bicol peninsula, the northern tip of the Cordillera mountains, the Zambales ranges and the Bataan peninsula, Bondoc peninsula, and the islands of Negros, Panay, and Palawan. There are at least 25 groupings, with a highly tentative national population count of 766 (NM 1994).

       Although basically hunters and gatherers, being the most proficient in the use of the bow and arrow, they also practice minimal horticulture in small patches. They are known to have developed patron-client relationships with adjacent groups for trade and food procurement. The social groupings are small bands that have fluid membership based on bilateral kinship.

Distribution of Ethnic Groups by Provinces
(Arrangement: Population count)
(Negrito/Agta/Atta ?/Batak/Dumagat)
(There are at least 25 Negrito sub-groups. The dichotomy between the different Negrito groups is not delineated; also the diff. between the ATTA of northern Cordillera; and the non-Negrito ATTA of Mindanao is not clarified in the NSO 1990 census. Some sub-groups in the NSO tabulation said to be in some provinces may have been mis-identified.)
Total National Population 7,466
(less Non-Negrito)
NEGRITO
Agusan del N. 57
Aurora 76
Bataan 10
Benguet 11
Cagayan 18
Davao 10
Davao del S. 19
Isabela 8
Kalinga-Apayao 175 (Negrito Atta)
La Union 10
Negros Occ. 10 (Ati)
Pangasinan 10
Rizal 31
Surigao del N. 152 (Non-Negrito Mamanwa)
Mandaluyong 10
Manila 63
Makati 10
Muntinlupa 42
Paranaque 11
Taguig 13
AGTA
Aklan 43 (Ati)
Batanes 1 (Non-Negrito Mamanwa)
Bukidnon 105
Bulacan 50
Cagayan 269
Catanduanes 18
Davao del S. 88 (Non-Negrito Mamanwa)
Ilocos N. 10 (Atta)
Ilocos S. 9 (Ati)
Iloilo 10
Isabela 11
Laguna 29
Lanao del N. 68
Lanao del S. 13
Maguindanao 60
Misamis Or. 10
Negros Occ. 11
Occ. Mindoro 30
Palawan 30
Pangasinan 54
Rizal 94
S. Cotabato 11
S. Kudarat 72
Sulu 33
Tawi-Tawi 10
Zambales 21
Kalookan 10
Las Pinas 10
Manila 11
Muntinlupa 10
Quezon City 84
Taguig 13
ATTA
Aklan 10
Aurora 11
Bataan 11
Batangas 40
Bukidnon 10
Cagayan 175
Camarines S. 9
Cavite 30
Davao 7407 (Non-Negrito)
Davao del Sur 6448 (Non-Negrito)
Ilocos N. 10
Ilocos S. 22
Iloilo 20
Kalinga-Apayao 47
Lanao del S. 8
Occ. Mindoro 11
Pampanga 21
Pangasinan 10
Quezon 29
Rizal 43
Sulu 10
Tarlac 11
Tawi-Tawi 10
Zambales 10
Zamboanga N. 12
Manila 11
Quezon City 22
Taguig 12
BATAK
Antique 10
Basilan 10
Bataan 31
Bohol 90
Bukidnon 143
Camarines 11
Camiguin 10
Capiz 9
Cavite 52
Cebu 244
Davao 22
Davao del S. 73
Ilocos N. 9
Ilocso S. 4
Iloilo 20
Kalinga-Apayao 7
Lanao del N. 11
Maguindanao 9
Misamis Occ. 57
Misamis Or. 110
Negros Occ. 21
N. Cotabato 32
N. Samar 10
Nueva Ecija 20
Palawan 259
Pampanga 9
Pangasinan 10
Quezon 16
Rizal 10
S. Leyte 19
Surigao N. 22
Tawi-Tawi 10
Zambales 10
Zamboanga N. 32
Zamboanga S. 220
Kalookan 21
Las Pinas 21
Mandaluyong 10
Manila 31
Makati 21
Mantinlupa 11
Quezon City 21
Taguig 12
DUMAGAT
Agusan S. 10
Albay 9
Antique 11
Aurora 384
Benguet 21
Bukidnon 21
Bulacan 10
Cavite 31
Cebu 41
Davao 10
Iloilo 66
Isabela 127
Laguna 67
Negros Occ. 510
Negros Or. 60
N. Cotabato 11
Nueva Vizcaya 87
Palawan 41
Pampanga 12
Pangasinan 20
Quezon 656
Quirino 71
S. Cotabato 20
S. Kudarat 20
Zamboanga S. 442
Kalookan 10
Manila 10
Marikina 11
Makati 10
Muntinlupa 20
Paranaque 10
Quezon City 30
Total National Population 27,627
Kalinga-Apayao 24,844