Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Green Turtle Omnibus Issue

La Poste, the Mauritius Post, La Poste Comores, the Seychelles Postal Services, Paositra Malagasy and the French Southern and Antarctic Lands (TAAF) jointly issued on 9 October 2014 an omnibus stamp on the Green Turtle. It is the first ever joint issue between countries of the south west Indian Ocean and was branded as a France - Indian Ocean joint issue.

The green turtle (Chelonia mydas, Tortue verte or Tortue franche in French) is found in the tropical marine waters of the south west Indian Ocean which shelter important nesting and feeding sites for this protected species.

The green turtle is a great migrant that can weigh over two hundred kilograms and measure over a metre long. Fully grown, it is essentially herbivorous and reproduces on the beaches of tropical islands of the Indian Ocean as well as on Malagasy shores and on East African coasts.

The green turtle is undergoing several study and conservation programmes in the countries of the region.

The Mauritian FDC

'Marine turtles of the Indian Ocean: a common heritage to protect.'

The six stamps were officially launched at the head office of the TAAF in Saint-Leu, Réunion, where the 6e Rencontres Philatéliques de l'Océan Indien (6th Indian Ocean Philatelic Meetings, 9-11 October 2014) were being held.

Unofficial FDC hand stamped at the Philatelic Bureau, Port Louis
and featuring the World Post Day 2014 Special Cachet.

The Indian Ocean Philatelic Meetings, RPOI, are organised by the Association Philatélique de l'Océan Indien, APOI (Indian Ocean Philatelic Association, based in Réunion, founded in 1958) and held on a almost-yearly basis.

Alternative links in French to blogs of the APOI:
- http://philateliereunion.blogspot.com/ (last updated in June 2011)

Mauritius last hosted the RPOI, the 4th, in 2012 (6-9 September, Cybercity Tower 1, Ebène), in the context of the 240 years of postal services in Mauritius.

Note that Réunion actually represents France
and that the French stamp was released in mainland France too.

In Mauritius the official launching was done at the new Trianon Post Office.

Technical details:

Release date: 9 October 2014
Stamp denomination, country and print run: 
 0,98 € - France - 1,000,000
 1500 Ar - Madagascar - 100,000 
 150 Kmf - Comoros - 11,000
 R 50 - Seychelles - 100,000
 1,05 € - TAAF - 1,000
 Rs14 - Mauritius - missing figure
(Source for print runs: http://apoi.over-blog.com/actions-realisees.html)
Designer: Claude Perchat
Size:  40.85 x 30 mm
Printer: Phil@poste, France
Process: Offset
Number per sheet: 42 stamps
Stamp sheet format: 240 x 286 mm
Watermark: None

The presentation pack, issued by La Poste:

Illustrations by A. d'Aunay
Graphic conception by S. Ghinéa

The stamps on covers:

From France:

Special thanks to Eric for sending me this very nice cover from the 68e Salon Philatélique d'Automne (68th Autumn Philatelic Exhibition, Paris, 6-9 November 2014) and signed by Claude Perchat, the designer of these stamps.

From Tromelin, TAAF:

This cover too is from Eric. Besides being a nesting site for green turtles and boobies, the island of Tromelin is also an occasional amateur radio station. 2014 marked 60 years since the first amateur radio signal was sent from there; more information about the miniature sheet affixed on this cover and cancelled on the first day of issue (6 November 2014) on Eric's always-interesting blog: http://timbredujura.blogspot.com/2015/02/60-years-of-amateur-radio-liaisons-from.html

Illustrated link to the Tromelin 2014 FT4TA Expedition: http://www.tromelin2014.com/en/

Special cachet hand stamped at the back of the cover
depicting from left to right a booby, Tromelin and a marine turtle.

A vaguemestre in French is a military in charge of the delivery of mail.

From Mauritius:

The following cover was sent from Port Louis Centre Post Office on 16 October 2014.

The Green Turtle on Coat of Arms

British Indian Ocean Territory


1 comment:

  1. The green turtles of Mauritius have been so much exploited in the past for their meat and eggs that now they are restricted mainly to Agalega and Saint Brandon. These stamps are a great way to remind us of these wonderful creatures.
    Thanks for sharing, Elna