03 APRIL 2023

Special NZ Post stamp to celebrate 100 years of Forest & Bird

Aotearoa New Zealand’s first environmental group Forest & Bird is turning 100 this year and NZ Post is marking the milestone with a stamp release featuring exquisite watercolour artworks of flora and fauna.

NZ Post worked with Forest & Bird to commission works by Wellington wildlife artist Rachel Walker.

NZ Post Collectables Programme Manager Lynette Townsend says the stamps represent Forest & Bird's many significant achievements over the past 100 years in Aotearoa New Zealand.

“This beautiful collection also represents the four main areas of Forest & Bird’s conservation work - terrestrial, freshwater, marine and climate.” Lynette said as well as stamps, NZ Post has also produced other Forest & Bird 100-year collectables including greeting cards, tea towels and prints. Paying tribute to the work Forest & Bird does, Rachel said forest and birds are some of New Zealand’s “most important treasures”.

“It’s so important to have an organisation specifically to protect them.”

With this collection, Rachel said she wanted to bring the outdoors in.

“I love the beautiful flows and patterns, and feathers and scales, nature creates. It's great for your wellbeing to be outdoors amongst the flora and fauna, listen to the birds, and get the fresh forest air. I wanted to bring a little bit of that feeling indoors to our walls with my artwork.” Working with communities, Government and supporters, Forest & Bird is funded solely by memberships, donations and bequests.

Forest & Bird’s Chief Executive Nicola Toki says the stamp release is a significant and an emotional moment for members of the organisation.

“It recognises the efforts of thousands of Forest and Bird members, volunteers and staff over the past century to preserve our endangered wilderness areas and the critters they're home to.

The four artworks depict landscapes and species of significance to the society and its membership," she said.

"The stamp collection starts with a depiction of Kāpiti Island, through to the fourth image of the Buller Plateau, representing current conservation concerns/future work."

As part of Forest & Bird’s centennial celebrations a stamp launch event will be held on April 5.

“I'm really looking forward to joining Rachel at the big reveal of her exquisite stamp designs at Otari-Wilton's Bush in Te Whanganui-A-Tara on April 5th.”

“We've featured Rachel's beautiful paintings on a range of products so that people can share and enjoy the celebration by displaying her artwork in their homes, giving Forest & Bird collectables as gifts or sending cards to friends and family,” Lynette said.

“They also pay tribute to the people who have worked to protect and restore nature for the past 100 years. We want anyone who cares about Forest & Bird's important work to be able to join in on the celebrations, whether or not they are stamp collectors."

The Forest & Bird stamps and other collectables are now available for pre-order – with a release date of 5 April 2023.

“It’s been our pleasure to work with NZ Post on this collection and we hope stamp collectors and members of the public love the range as much as we do,” Nicola concluded.

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