StampNews.com is happy to let the collectors know that a new set of stamps featuring songbirds, including the cuckoo and nightingale, is being launched by the Royal Mail.
The 10-stamp Songbirds issue explores some familiar and less well-known varieties of bird. The items feature beautiful depictions of songbirds that fill the British countryside with birdsong that defines the British spring and early summer.
Birdsong conveys a powerful message about the individual singer. A singing male bird is communicating in song how fabulous he is to attract a female and provide a warning to other males that the territory is claimed The birds included in the set are: Great Tit; Wren; Willow Warbler; Goldcrest; Skylark; Blackcap; Song Thrush; Nightingale; Cuckoo and Yellowhammer
The best time to listen to birdsong is at dawn when sound carries better
The stamps launch in time for International Dawn Chorus Day on Sunday 7 May
Royal Mail worked with journalist and author, Simon Barnes on the stamp issue. Simon has written a number of books on birds and bird watching.
Birds communicate in sound for various reasons; their calls warn of danger and can keep the flock together. Birdsong however, has a far more complex reason, often conveying a powerful message about the individual singer.
A singing male bird uses birdsong to communicate how fabulous he is to attract a female and provide a warning to other males that the territory is taken. There are some birds that sing the same song over and over again, hundreds of times a day. Other species have complex repertoires and songs that are more changeable and more personal. Individual males with the best repertoires advertise themselves as the most attractive and most fearsome.
The glories of the British spring require ears as well as eyes and the best time to listen to birdsong is at dawn when sounds carry better at first light. Birdsong also enables us to find out what’s going on among the birds as it allows us to count the singers and their territories.
Royal Mail spokesperson, Philip Parker, said: “These exquisite stamps are a timely reminder of the wealth of birdsong to be enjoyed at this time of year.”
Royal Mail has also created an animated version of the artwork on the Nightingale stamp along with an audio clip of its song. The artwork can be activated by downloading the Aurasma app and holding a smartphone or android device over the Nightingale stamp.