Release date: 5 March 2019
Australia boasts an impressive array of animals, many of which have become iconic symbols at home and overseas. This stamp issue is the latest on this popular theme. It presents striking photographs of four fascinating creatures. This group of animals span a variety of personality traits and physical features.
The stamps, designed by Sonia Young of the Australia Post Design Studio, use a close-up perspective and white background to show off the unique features of each fascinating species.
$1 – Galah
The Galah (Eolophus roseicapilla), also aptly known as the Rose-Breasted Cockatoo, for its distinctive rose-pink and grey colouring, is found across Australia. The name “Galah” is thought to have come from the Gamilaraay-Yuwaalaraay word “gilaa”.
This vocal and playful bird is known for its acrobatic style of flight but spends much of the day sheltering in trees and shrubs. Large, noisy flocks can often be seen feeding on grass seeds. Like many other cockatoo species, the Galah can learn to mimic and repeat words.
$1 – Red Kangaroo
The Red Kangaroo (Osphranter rufus) is the largest marsupial and mammal in Australia, with some males known to stand as tall as at two metres and weigh around 85 kilograms. The Red Kangaroo’s substantial rear leg muscles help them to jump a distance of nine metres in a single bound, reaching heights of around 1.8 metres.
The Red Kangaroo is one of the two animals featured on Australia’s coat of arms. The strong and muscly kangaroo participates in “boxing” matches – displays of dominance between males of the species. Its preferred habitats are semi-arid plains, grasslands, woodlands and open forests, where it feeds on grasses and occasionally on shrubs.
$1 – Tasmanian Devil
The endangered Tasmanian Devil (Sarcophilus harrisii) is the largest living carnivorous marsupial in Australia and the world, with males weighing around 12 kilograms.
Despite its fearsome reputation, the loud grunts and screeches that led to it being branded a “devil” are actually thought to be made out of fear rather than aggression. Now restricted to Tasmania, much work is being done to save this fascinating creature from the fatal Devil Facial Tumour Disease.
$1 – Blue-tongue Lizard
The Eastern Blue-tongue (Tiliqua scincoides) is a common sight in eastern and northern Australia, though species of blue-tongue are found throughout mainland Australia, often in backyard gardens, where they play a valuable role in controlling pests such as snails and slugs (though they also eat vegetation, berries and flowers). Blue-tongues, so-named for their deep cobalt-blue tongues, are quite shy, though they can become aggressive if threatened.