Thursday, September 21, 2017

Nature Walk

On September 15, 2016, the Mauritius Post in collaboration with the Forestry Service released two "Nature Walk" stamps, depicting Powder Mills Nature Walk (Rs2) in Pamplemousses and Sophie Nature Walk (Rs20) in Plaine Sophie.

The Forestry Service under the aegis of the Ministry of Agro Industry & Food Security has created three nature walks, namely: Powder Mills Nature Walk, Pamplemousse; Mon Vert Nature Walk, Forest Side; and Sophie Nature Walk, Plaine Sophie. The nature walks were created with a view to providing forest leisure and recreational facilities to local and tourists.

The nature walks also provide a great opportunity to learn and appreciate the rich and native biodiversity of Mauritius, their value to society and the need for conservation and protection of fragile ecosystems. The nature walks are managed by the Forestry Service and are open to locals and tourists alike free of charge. The trails are open between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. during weekends and on public holidays.

Rs2 - Powder Mills Nature Walk, Pamplemousses

Powder Mills Nature Walk is located in Pamplemousses near Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam National Hospital. Inaugurated on May 17, 2007, the nature walk covers an extent of 60 hectares of State forest land and includes a Visitor's Interpretation Centre, a native plant garden and a medicinal plant garden. A network of 3 km trails with pathways, kiosks, picnic areas has been created for the public to enjoy the natural environment and rare endemic plants.

The site is also crossed by a river; it also includes a forest nursery where native and ornamental plants are on sale to the public.

The forest area is under plantation of high value timber species like Mahogany, Teak, Araucaria, Dalbergia, amongst others. The site is one of the few remaining forested areas in the northern part of Mauritius and is associated with historical events and occupies ancient buildings and monuments including remnants of slave camps.

This nature walk is also considered to be an educational visit site for school children. Each year, the nature walk welcomes 25,000 visitors; guided tours are available on request.

Unofficial FDC showing a map of the Black River Gorges National Park which offers nature walks too.

Rs20 - Sophie Nature Walk, Plaine Sophie

The Sophie Nature Walk is located at Plaine Sophie, near Mare aux Vacoas reservoir. The nature walk covers 10 hectares of State forest land. It also forms part of the catchment area of the Mare aux Vacoas reservoir and consists of mostly of pine plantation managed mainly for ecosystem services, i.e. for soil and water conservation. The region was previously covered with a dense native forest of upland vegetation type. The remnants can still be found at Perrier Nature Reserves in the northern extremity of Plaine Sophie.

Inaugurated on August 1, 2013, the nature walk also includes a Visitor's Interpretation Centre, an Arboretum, a Forest Museum exhibiting formerly used forestry manual tools, a Fernery/ Orchidarium, water features, kiosks and picnic areas.

A 3 km network of trails and pathways has been created across the forest. The trail goes along Mare aux Vacoas reservoir enabling visitors to enjoy the shade and assess the relevance of a forest as a rain catchment area. Native flora and fauna thrive in the forest. Each year, Sophie Nature Walk welcomes about 8,000 visitors.

Source: FDC insert

The third nature walk - Mon Vert Nature Walk - did not make it on any stamp.

Unofficial FDC postmarked at Monneron Hill PO and showing Le Dauguet Nature Trail in Port Louis.
Le Dauguet was reinstated and embellished in 2015. 

Technical Details

Date of issue: 15 September 2017
  Rs2 - Powder Mills Nature Walk, Pamplemousses
  Rs20 - Sophie Nature Walk, Plaine Sophie
Design: Graphic Dept., The Mauritius Post Ltd
Stamps size:  29.94 x 44.45 mm
Printer: BDT International Security Printing Ltd.
Process: Lithography
Number per sheet: 50 stamps set in two panes of 25 separated by gutter
Watermark: w18 - CASCO
Perforation: 14 x 2 cm


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