Marine life highlights Cayman stamps

Cayman Islands stamp collectors be prepared: There are additions to be had and they look spectacular. 

A dozen colourful postage stamps showcasing the beauty of marine life in the western Caribbean territory are now on sale as part of the “Cayman Islands Marine Life – Definitive Series” released Tuesday by the Cayman Islands Postal Service.  

With stunning images from underwater photographers Elly Wray, Guy Harvey, Darvin Ebanks, Phil Bush, Croy McCoy and Nina Banks, the new series shows why the Cayman Islands is a top-notch scuba diving destination of international repute.  

Among the marine life featured in the stamps is the endemic parrotfish and the internationally threatened green sea turtle and Nassau grouper.  

The latest stamp release by the Cayman Islands Postal Service corresponded with the 9 October observance of World Postal Day. 

The previous definitive series, (Birds, 9 October, 2006), will soon be retired from circulation. 

Definitive stamps are considered as the workhorses of stamps, because they are sold for five years. They are also issued in denominations that coincide with the Cayman Islands Postal Service’s most common weight steps, whereas commemorative and other special stamps have a limited counter life and are only issued in four to six denominations. 

There will be three, First Day Covers with four stamps each. The sea life chosen for each cover are: the Nassau grouper and the Leathery Barrel Sponge, Yellow Tube Sponge and Longsnout Seahorse.  

The stamps featured include the:  

25¢ stoplight parrotfish;  

50¢ green sea turtle;  

75¢ common sea fan and yellow tube sponge;  

80¢ upside-down jellyfish;  

$1 Yellowtail Damselfish (Juvenile);  

$1.50 spotted trunkfish; 

$1.60 Caribbean spiny lobster; 

$2 giant barrel sponge; 

$4 Caribbean reef shark; 

$5 great barracuda; 

$10 southern stingray; 

$20 West Indian spider crab.  

The souvenir sheet has the blade fire coral and Yellowtail Damselfish (Juvenile). Underwater photographer Elly Wray said she was honoured to contribute images to this definitive stamp series.  

“My first scuba diving experience was here in the Cayman Islands, as well as my first experiences in underwater photography, so I feel very connected to these waters,” she said. “The beauty of the Islands’ natural resources has been so inspiring to me and I feel privileged to have the opportunity to share these images celebrating the diversity of Cayman’s marine life.” 

Acting Postmaster General Petrona Gordon added, “Cayman Islands stamps have always been known for their beauty. This issue is no different and reflects the fact that a lot of work has gone into the design. I would like to thank the photographers for their cooperation in allowing us to show their beautiful photographs, as without their assistance, this issue would not have been possible.”  

 

For more information, contact the Philatelic Bureau at 946-4757. 

“Cayman Islands Marine Life – Definitive Series” 

Caribbean-Reef-Shark stampStoplight-Parrotfish stampCaribbean-Spiny-Lobster stampGiant-Barrel-Sponge stampGreen sea turtle stampUpside down jellyfish stampYellowtail-Damsel-Juvenile stampWest-Indian-Spider-Crab stampSouthern-Sting-Ray stampCommon-Sea-Fan-Yellow-Tube-Sponge stampGreat-Barracuda stamp

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