Saturday, 29 June 2013

1978 Sea Resources.

           As you will probably know, I like stamps which use pictures to display their subject. I think this set is a great example of this from the 1970s. What makes these stamps so good is that drawings were used rather than photographs which would have included too much details for the small area of a postage stamp. Also the decision to use drawings might have been because of technology at that time. The result is they are interesting, clear and easy to understand.
           New Zealand is surrounded by oceans and has always been connected with the sea. This stamp issue is about how the country is gaining wealth and produce from the resources of the ocean while at the same time protecting these resources for future generations.



Thursday, 27 June 2013


For an index to all our posts on The Maori People.

         Following on with the Matariki theme I decided to do a post on the heitiki, an ornamental pendant of the Māori people of New Zealand which is worn around the neck. 

1935 Pictorials.
Wahine (young Maori girl) - 3d
The 1935 Pictorial Issue featured a young Maori girl on the 3d value. What is of interest to us is what she is wearing. The head-band is made of plaited flax, dyed red and black. The feather is that of the huia, a native bird now known to be extinct. Held by a flax cord fastened around her neck is the Maori amulet known as a "tiki". Today it is more commonly known by the correct name of "Heitiki." This is not particularly a good view since she is side on but its been included here as the first example found on a New Zealand Postage Stamp.
View our post 1935 Pictorial Issue.

Friday, 21 June 2013

2013 Honey Bees.

         To mark 100 years of the National Beekeepers Association, New Zealand issued this attractive set of five values. The issue date is the 3rd of July and the stamps were be sold in sets or singles, as well as the usual miniature sheet and first day cover.
        There are a number of things which I like about this set. First the subject is one I like. I like eating natural honey and until recently we had bee hives on this property where I live. Secondly I find the stamps are attractive with clear pictures of their subjects. Thirdly the five stamps fit together to tell the story of honey from the flower to eating.

70c Collection the Nectar.
       On the first stamp the bees fly out to the flowers. Scouts have gone out and found the flowers then returned to tell the workers. The workers move from flower to flower collecting nectar as they go. 

Monday, 3 June 2013

2013 New Zealand Native Ferns

           On the 7th February New Zealand issued a set of five stamps depicting native ferns.

           New Zealand's climate is just right for the many types of fern found in our native forests. I live in a country area myself and the bottom half of my property has been allowed to return to native bush. First the gorse and scrub reclaimed the once cleared land, then larger trees like manuka began to appear. These larger trees killed off the scrub underneath making way for many other native species including our native ferns. I was down there today and in some places the ferns are now so thick it impossible to walk through.

The Stamps
        I like the design of these stamps. They have a pleasant appearance, are simple, well laid out and not cluttered. The fern is depicted in bold coloured diagrams with other detail drawings in grey. The ferns common and scientific names appear under 'New Zealand' and the demonization appears as a symbolic post mark. Nice design, well done.   

Hen & Chickens Fern.                                                Kidney Fern.
          (Asplenium bulbiferum)                                       (Cardiomanes reniforme)