Czech Post issued 4 series of stamps between 2016-2019, one each year, devoted to local zoological gardens (in Czech: Zoologické zahrady). The sheets are similar in design, and have been researched and designed by the same team of people – Libuše Knotková, Jaromír Knotek and Martin Srb. Each series contains 4 stamps, each depicting one or more animals from a local zoos. So far 21 animals from 16 different Czech zoos have been introduced. The stamps are issued in beautifully designed minisheets, including vignettes ands several other animal species depicted on the borders of the minisheets. A fifth series was not announced for 2020, and it is possible the series will be discontinued.
Issue I – 2016
The first issue of 2016 presents four zoological gardens, from Prague, Jilhava, Dvůr Králové nad Labem, and Olomouc. We can see on the stamps the following animal species: Przewalski’s wild horse (Equus ferus przewalskii); the snow leopard (Panthera uncia); the black rhinocerus (Diceros bicornis); the African wilddog (Lycaon pictus); the gemsbok (Oryx Gazella); and the African lion (Panthera leo leo).
This article is about one of my all-time favorite definitive series of stamps, issued by Togo between 1964-1965 and totaling 22 stamps. The stamps show the exotic flora and fauna in very nice miniatures, some of the varieties of plants, animals or birds being pictured for the first time on stamps, or the only time! The stamps have by now a vintage look and are a true delight for the avid collector.
Pictured above: tiger orchid (Odontoglossum grande); mallow (Hibiscus); the African swallowtail (Papilio dardanus); morpho aega (Morpho aega); the emperor scorpion (Pandinus imperator).
If I were to describe Estonia based on their output of fauna stamps, I would use one word: magic. Since 2001, each year, Estonian Post issues one bird stamp called ‘aasta lind’ (English: bird of the year). Since 2002, they issue animal stamps on a yearly basis, too. These stamps describe very well the Estonian ecosystem with beautiful and clear imagery – more on that below. But they also tell the history of Estonian stamps over the course of the last 20 years: they have seen the height of the Estonian kroon and the transition to Euro. They have seen generous printruns of 500,000 copies in their first issues, but go down to 20,000 in the newest ones. Sadly, they become more difficult to find and collect – but there’s joy in each yearly apparition, that I expect eagerly.
Estonian Birds on stamp, 2001-2020
Estonian bird stamps have been issued since 2001 and continue being issued at the date of writing this article in 2020. The latest issue has just been released in April.
While there are literally hundreds of fauna-related stamps issued by Canadian Post, today I’m going to devote an article to the high-nominal series of engraved stamps depicting animals issued between 1997 and 2010. The series contains 9 high-quality engraved stamps, with a banknote-like quality. As commonly done with Canadian stamps, the names of the animals are featured bilingually in English and French. Their face value ranges from 1Can$ to 10Can$. Unlike other high nominal value stamps, these stamps are really usable (i.e. can be affixed to correspondence), therefore their value doubles as postal and philatelic products. Many countries issue nowadays stamps with absurdly high face value – which cannot be used for postage, and therefore are issued as philatelic items. However, the Canadian ones we are talking about can and are actually used as postage.
The first series, 1997
The first stamp issued was the Grizzly bear 8Can$ stamp in 1997.
Former Yugoslavia issued 5 sets of stamps under the title “Yugoslavian Fauna” between the years 1954-1962. The stamps went from mixed thematics (the first series features birds, fish, animals and insects) to pure thematics (e.g. birds). A total of 48 stamps were issued in the 5 sets.
The first issue, 30.06.1954
Top row, left to right: ground squirrel, chamois, brown bear, olm, cricket, lizard.
Bottom row, left to right: red deer, Eurasian lynx, great white pelican, brown trout, beetle, bearded vulture.