Border birds

FLIGHT June 2012 – Volume 26 No. 4

Ukraine - 23.11.11 - EUROPA - Forests

This is a sheet of 12 stamps, six of which show a bird-shaped outline of sky looking up through a forest clearing. Of more direct interest is the bird shown in the surrounds. It appears to be a White-crowned Sparrow, Zonotrichia leucophrys. However, that species is confined to the New World.

Bequia - 2011 - Birds and eggs

This is a complicated issue.

This sheet shows a Red-rumped Swallow on the stamp and, in the surrounds, eggs of:
1. Short-billed Dowitcher, Limnodromus griseus
2. Great Snipe, Gallinago media
3. Eurasian Woodcock, Scolopax rusticola
4. Common Greenshank, Tringula nebularia
5. Jack Snipe, Lymnocryptes minimus

Here we have Great Crested Flycatcher, Myiarchus crinitus in the surrounds and on the egg-shaped stamp. The other eggs in the surrounds are:
1. Common Raven, Corvus corax
2. Boat-tailed Grackle, Quiscalis major
4. Western Scrub-Jay (California Jay) Aphelocoma californica
5. Brown-headed Cowbird Molothrus ater - though I am doubtful about the Cowbird species

Finally, we have a Ruff, Philomachus pugnax in the surrounds, while the stamps are egg-shaped and belong to:
1. Ruff, Philomachus pugnax
2. Common Murre (Guillemot), Uria aalge
3. Great Cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo


The Cook Islands Philatelic Bureau has issued 12 stamps featuring the verses from this well known Christmas song. However, Aitutaki, Cook Islands and Penrhyn Island each feature four of the ‘days’, as follows: Penrhyn 1,2,3,&4; Cook Islands 5,6,7&8; Aitutaki 9,10,11,12. Birds appear on days 1 to 4, 6 and 7, viz,:-

1 Red-legged Partridge, Alectoris rufa (in a pear tree) 2 Two European Turtle Doves, Streptopelia turtur
3 Three Red Junglefowl, Gallus gallus (French hens) 4 Eurasian Blackbirds, Turdus merula (Calling birds)
6 Greylag Geese, Anser anser (a-laying) 7 Mute Swans, Cygnus olor (a-swimming)

Each of the three countries has also issued a sheet containing three sets of ‘their’ four stamps - without any birds in the borders. However, each of the countries has also issued a sheet showing ‘their’ four stamps plus the remaining eight stamp images in the borders!. Perhaps these illustrations will clarify this complicated situation!

Montserrat - 2011 - Fauna of China

In addition to the Purple Heron stamp, this sheet shows a prominent Golden Pheasant, Chrysolophus pictus in the surrounds.

Grenadines of Grenada (Carriacou & Petite Martinique)
2011 - Birds of the world

This issue of two sheets of four stamps plus two miniature sheets is attractively got up and, fortunately, has the border bird names well inscribed.

Sheet 1

The birds on stamps are:

Village WeaverBelted Kingfisher
Scarlet TanagerSemipalmated Plover

Clockwise from top left in the border are:

Red-footed BoobySula sula
Blue-winged TealAnas discors
Purple-throated CaribEulampis jugularis
(American) Black VultureCoragyps atratus
Sheet 2

The birds on stamps are:

Altamira OrioleGreen-throated Carib
OspreyGreen Heron

From top to bottom in the border are:

Brown PelicanPelecanus occidentalis
AnhingaAnhinga anhinga
Gray-cheeked ThrushCatharus minimus
Grenadines of Grenada (Carriacou & Petite Martinique)
2011 - Birds of the world (continued)

Miniature Sheet 1

The bird on the stamp is a Merlin:

In the surrounds, from top to bottom, we have:

Tricolored HeronEgretta tricolor
Masked DuckNomonyx dominicus
Orange BishopEuplectes franciscanus
Miniature Sheet 2

The bird on the stamp is a Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

In the surrounds, from top to bottom, we have:

Broad-winged HawkButeo platypterus
Lesser Antillean BullfinchLoxigilla noctis
Royal TernThalasseus maximus
Brown PelicanPelecanus occidentalis
Iran - 14.12.11 - W.W.F. Native Owls

The four stamps show Northern Long-eared Owl, Spotted Owlet, Pallid Scops-Owl & Brown Fish-Owl.

In the upper margin a Barn Owl, Tyto alba can be seen flying. The nest, eggs and chicks in the lower margin may belong to the same species.

Russia - 27.2.12 - Wrangel Island - MS
The stamp shows birds flying into the top left corner. These appear to be Harlequin Duck, although King Eider has also been suggested.
In the bottom right-hand corner of the surrounds there is a Glaucous Gull, Larus hyperboreus.
Japan - 31.3.11 - Peter Rabbit and friends

These two attractive sheets show illustrations from children’s author Beatrix Potter’s books. The self-adhesive stamps on the 50y sheet are all oval in shape while those on the 80y sheet vary in shape. The stamps and the sheet surrounds include a number of birds:

Sheet of 10 @ 50y:

Stamps are - Tawny Owl (2nd row, right) & Domestic duck - “Jemima Puddleduck” (3rd row right)

Border birds are:
European Robin, Erithacus rubecula (Perched on spade in lower centre panel)
Domestic poultry - Baby chick in top margin

Sheet of 10 @ 80y:

Stamps are - European Robin, Erithacus rubecula On two stamps (One perched on spade at lower centre and the other to the right of it.)

There are also two border robins at the bottom right of the sheet, together with three Eurasian Blackbird, Turdus merula. Finally, there is a flying Common Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs in the top right corner.

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