While the world increasingly runs on technology, nature is making an unexpected appearance in some countries’ passports and other ID documents. Portraits of monarchs and coats of arms are being replaced with images that celebrate national flora and fauna—often at the request of citizens who are surveyed about their preferences.

Here, we take a look at a few of these “back to nature” documents.

Australia R Series passport, launched in 2022, blends high-security elements with images created by Indigenous Australian artists, depicting the country’s unique natural beauty.

Visa pages

These visa pages depict the iconic Australian coasts with photo-realistic, double-page colour illustrations. When viewed under ultraviolet light, a species of native fauna appears, and the sky in each image appears as a unique nightscape.

The State of Arizona began issuing its redesigned driver license in 2023. The design is rich in images that reflect the state’s desert landscape, with its unique plant and animal life. Some of the images can only be seen under UV light.

Arizona driver license

Canada’s current passport, launched in 2023, reflects the country’s natural beauty in all four seasons.

The passport cover features metallic foils in the shape of a maple leaf and a debossed maple leaf on the back.

On the inside front cover, the natural scene looks quite different under normal and UV lights.

On the visa pages, some images of Canada’s people, landscapes and wildlife only appear under ultraviolet light or change appearance due to the use of color-shifting ink.

More “back to nature” designs in the pipeline

The trend of celebrating natural flora and fauna in identity documents shows no sign of slowing down, as more countries look to integrate natural imagery in their passports. One such example is the Irish passport, which is being redesigned to include images of the Irish wolfhound and other natural features of the Emerald Isle.

Irish officials pose with Boánn, the majestic wolfhound, who has inspired some of the intricate artwork that will feature in Ireland’s next generation passport. (Photo courtesy of the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs)

In a press release last month, a senior designer said, “It is a pleasure to showcase some of the early high-security artwork for Ireland’s next generation passport. The public’s insights, Ireland’s rich variety of flora and fauna, and a range of complex security features are all being incorporated into the new design.”


Government of Ireland, Department of Foreign Affairs

Irish Times


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