The Ascension Island Post Office is delighted to announce the release of a series of postcard rate stamps depicting the green turtle for which the island is so famous.
Ascension Island has the second largest nesting population of the green turtle in the entire Atlantic Ocean and the largest nesting population of any marine turtle species in all of the UK Overseas Territories, with over 25,000 nests annually.
The population was severely depleted by the harvesting of nesting females for meat during the 19th and early 20th centuries by those on the island and passing ships that would take live turtles on-board to ensure fresh meat for their journey. However, it is currently recovering strongly after decades of protection.
Monitoring of the number of nesting turtles has been undertaken since 1977 by a mixture of visiting academics, local volunteers and, in recent years, the Ascension Island Government Conservation Department (AIGCD). Green turtle nesting on Ascension’s beaches has increased by more than 500 per cent since monitoring began, with more than 400 females nesting on the Island’s main nesting beach on any night during peak season. The green turtles nesting at Ascension migrate from their foraging grounds off the coast of Brazil every 3 – 4 years, returning to the island where they themselves were born over 30 years ago, to lay their eggs, a journey that takes approximately 5 – 6 weeks. New legislation enacted by the Island’s Governor in July 2014 committed a fifth of the Territory’s land area to biodiversity conservation, creating seven new nature reserves and wildlife sanctuaries that include the Island’s three main turtle nesting beaches, along with globally-important seabird colonies that are home to more than 800,000 nesting seabirds.
For further information about the sea turtles or the work of AIGCD to conserve Ascension’s unique biodiversity, please visit the official website at www.ascension-island.gov.ac/conservation or find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/AscensionIslandConservation or Twitter @AIGConservation.
Design Bee Design
Photography Sam Weber except (in stamp sheetlet order):
Stamp 1 Glen Yon
Stamp 3 Johnny Hobson
Printer BDT International
Stamp Size 25.73 x 21mm
Sheet Format 10 and pictorial sheetlet of 6 designs
Perforation 14 per 2cms
Release Date 14 February 2015
Production Co-ordination Creative Direction (Worldwide) Ltd