Niue Blue Butterfly

The recent discovery of a new butterfly species on Niue has sparked excitement amongst the people of Niue and butterfly enthusiasts around the world. 

Issue information

The recently discovered Niue Blue is the only endemic butterfly species found on the remote Pacific island of Niue. 

This special butterfly was found on the island in 2009 by Australian Museum Research Associate Rob Lachlan. In 2012 he described the species from a pair of specimens and named it Nacaduba niueensis.

As there is only a handful of plant and animal species that are unique to Niue, this new discovery has particular importance for the people of the island. In fact, the Premier of Niue has named the species Niue’s national butterfly.

To celebrate the exciting discovery of this new species, Niue is featuring the Niue Blue on a set of stamps.

The set of four gummed stamps features both the upperside and underside of the male and female of the species.

This rather small brown butterfly cannot be confused with any other species occurring on the island of Niue. The upperside is brown in both sexes, with a scattering of blue scales at the base of the wings in some female specimens, whilst the underside has an intricate pattern of wavy brown, dark brown and white lines.

A miniature sheet and two first day covers are also available, which complement the scientific style of the stamps. The first day covers zoom in on this unique butterfly, showing the distinctive markings on the butterfly’s wings.

Technical information

Date of issue: 10 April 2013
Number of stamps: Four gummed 
Denominations: $1.20, $1.40, $1.70 and $2.00
Stamps and first day cover designed by: New Zealand Post Ltd, Wellington, New Zealand
Printer: Collectables and Solutions Centre, New Zealand Post, Whanganui, New Zealand
Number of colours: Four process colours
Stamp size and format: 40mm x 30mm
Paper type: Tullis Russell 104gsm red phosphor gummed stamp paper
Number of stamps per sheet: 16
Perforation gauge: 13.33
Period of sale: Unless stocks are exhausted earlier, these stamps will remain on sale until 9 April 2014.