Birds of Prey SI

Birds of Prey

Romfilatelia, the specialized company in issuing and trading Romanian postage stamps, introduces into circulation the postage stamps issue Birds of Prey.

The birds of prey, both diurnal and nocturnal, have the talent and courage that have established them as true, unchallenged champions of the bird species. The true masters of the air, endowed with a particular visual acuity, they capture and devour their victims by means of their bounded claws and their bent peaks. The day ones fully swallow their small captures. The extremely efficient digestive enzymes decompose and digest even the bones.

On the stamps of the issue, the following birds of prey are illustrated:

- the Sparrow Hawk (Accipiter nisus) - on the stamp with the face value of Lei 0.50. It is a rare species of brooding bird, and in our country it is often encountered during winter time and in the migration period, when Nordic exemplars also visit our country. The adults have a grey feathering back, unlike the young ones which have a brown one. On the chest, the male hawk has transversal red stripes, whereas the female has grey ones. It nests in low areas, seldom in the mountains. The eggs, 3-5, are whitish, with brown spots and are laid in May. The hatching, which lasts approximately a month, is generally made by the female.  

- the Marsh Harrier (Circus aeruginosus) - on the stamp with the face value of Lei 0.80. It is usually encountered in the Danube Delta and around marshes. The male harrier has red feathers and the wings and tail are grey. The female is brown, except for the head and wing edges which are beige. The nesting, generally made by the female, lasts for approximately 33 days. The 4-5 eggs, whitish-bluish, are laid at the end of April. In wintertime they migrate to Central Africa. In our country, in gentle winters, Nordic exemplars can also be found.

- the Lesser Spotted Eagle (Aquila pomarina) - on the stamp with the face value of Lei 1.60. It is smaller than an eagle. The typical position for the flying spotted eagles is with open wings and tips slightly bent down. It has large wings and a generally brown color palette.  They nest in forests with far-stretching areas.

- the Buzzard (Buteo buteo) - on the stamp with the face value of Lei 2.50. It is a species commonly encountered in forests, frequently found on agricultural lands and swamps. It flies with slow wing beats and flies over the ground with wide rotations in order to closely observe the area. It uses tall objects as observation points. It is one of the species with variable feathering, from dark brown to yellowish-white, with a light color stripe on the chest as a characteristic. They feed on mice, snakes, etc.. The female as well as the male hatch, the incubation period being no more than 30 days. 

- the Owlet (Athene noctua) - on the stamp with the face value of Lei 3.10. It is one of the most common nocturnal birds of prey, found in open regions, often rocky and in the vicinity of localities. It nests in tree hollows, on rocks and on building bridges. It feeds on rodents, birds and insects. It has a stuffed body, wide head with frontal eyes and long legs. The feathering is light brown on the inferior part, the back and the wings are brown with white spots. In April, it lays 5-7 and sometimes 9 eggs, which are hatched by the female for 28 days.

On the souvenir sheet of the philatelic issue, with the face value of Lei 4.70, the Eurasian Hobby (Falco subbuteo) is illustrated. It is a small size predator. It lives in low, open areas with tree bunches, near humid areas. It hunts extremely fast and agilely, especially swallows, but also other birds as well as insects. The color palette of its back is grey or brown, the lower part being lighter. In our country, it is encountered only in summertime.

Technical Details

Issue Date: 19.04.2007
Designer: Mihai Vamasescu
Process: Offset
Colours: 6 Colours
Size: 33 x 48 mm, 65 x 90 mm (stamp size: 42 x 52 mm)
Values: 0.50LEI, 0.80LEI, 1.60LEI, 2.50LEI, 3.10LEI, 4.70LEI