2014 Ross Dependency - Penguins of Antarctica

Penguins are the most commonly found birds in Antarctica, and the Ross Dependency 2014 stamp issue featured the five unique breeds of penguin that choose to call this cold, dry continent home.

Issue information

Truly flightless birds, penguins have evolved traits that make them perfect for icy conditions such as those of Antarctica. While many different colonies of penguins live in Antarctica, the majority of the world’s penguins prefer to inhabit other cooler waters in the Southern Hemisphere. A layer of fat under their feathers keeps them warm and a white belly acts as a camouflage keeping them safe from predators when swimming under ice.

The unique round stamps in this issue depict the emperor, Adelie, macaroni, gentoo and chinstrap penguins in their natural habitats, and feature an over-gloss of a compass design.

Picturesque Penguin Collectables

You could add to your Ross Dependency collection with these specially designed collectables celebrating the penguins of Antarctica. This issue included a first day cover, a miniature sheet and a miniature sheet first day cover, all of which featured the five stamps from this issue. The miniature sheet featured a macaroni penguin and the first day cover featured adorable baby Adélie penguins.

Expand your Collection with the Presentation Pack

To learn even more about these charming penguins and their habits, you could order the 2014 Ross Dependency: The Penguins of Antarctica presentation pack. As well as providing further information about the stars of this issue, it included the five gummed stamps, the miniature sheet and the first day covers.

The Ultimate Ross Dependency Collectable

The premium collectable in this issue, the limited edition was produced in limited numbers (only 2,000 were available worldwide) and contained stamp products not available elsewhere. The booklet inside described these fascinating birds and contained plate blocks of each of the five stamps in detail.

Included in the limited edition was a specially designed first day cover signed by Peter Beggs, Chief Executive, Antarctica New Zealand, a unique numbered inperforate miniature sheet, and colour seperations of the $3.00 stamp.

Ross Dependency and Greenland Joint Issue: From Pole to Pole

For the first time, the Ross Dependency issued a joint stamp issue with Greenland. Ross Dependency and Greenland are literally ’poles apart’, with the South Pole sitting at 90° south and the North Pole sitting at 90° north in Greenland. The wildlife at the Arctic is very different from the Antarctic, with several species of mammals, including Polar Bears and Arctic Foxes that could not survive at the South Pole.

This special joint issue included a miniature sheet (featuring the $3.00 Ross Dependency stamp and a replica of Greenland’s Polar Bear stamp) and one miniature sheet first day cover. The first day cover featured a special ‘From Pole to Pole’ datestamp.

Ross Dependency Postage in New Zealand

Ross Dependency stamps are not valid for postage in New Zealand. Click here to find out more.

Product Listing for 2014 Ross Dependency - Penguins of Antarctica

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Image Title Description Price
Single Stamp

Single 80c 'Emperor' gummed stamp.

Endemic to Antarctica, the emperor penguin is the largest and heaviest of all living penguin species. They can grow to approximately 115cm tall (3 foot 7 inches tall) and weigh as much as 40kg. Emperor penguins are the only species of penguin to breed during the Antarctic winter.

$0.80
Single Stamp

Single $1.40 'Adélie' gummed stamp.

An efficient and sleek swimmer, the Adélie penguin is the smallest and most abundant Antarctic species. With over three million breeding pairs, the Adélie penguin has experienced a population boom, with more than a 50 per cent increase in numbers over the last twenty years.

$1.40
Single Stamp

Single $2.00 'Macaroni' gummed stamp.

The large, crested macaroni penguin is named for its distinctive yellow/orange crest feathers on its forehead, characteristic of the ‘macaroni’ hat worn by 18th century men.It has an unusual breeding habit of laying two eggs, the first being much smaller than the second. For unknown reasons, the smaller egg only hatches if the larger egg fails to produce a chick.

$2.00
Single Stamp

Single $2.50 'Gentoo' gummed stamp.

The gentoo penguin has the most prominent tail of the penguin species. As the gentoo penguin waddles on land, its tail sticks out behind, sweeping from side to side. It is amongst several species of penguin that chooses its mate based on the nest. Some gentoo penguins will try to steal larger stones from other nests, resulting in noisy disputes.

$2.50

Single Stamp

Single $3.00 'Chinstrap' gummed stamp.

Chinstrap penguins live in some of the largest colonies, with over 100,000 breeding pairs at some locations. Unlike other penguin species, mating partners form a strong bond. They share the parenting duties and make sure their chicks are fed equally. They tend to return to the same nest site with the same partner to breed year after year.

$3.00
Miniature Sheet Mint, used or cancelled miniature sheet. 9.70
First Day Cover First day cover with stamps affixed. Cancelled on the first day of issue. $10.20
Miniature Sheet First Day Cover First day cover with miniature sheet affixed. Cancelled on the first day of issue. $10.20
Presentation Pack You could learn more about these charming penguins and their habits when you purchased the 2014 Ross Dependency: Penguins of Antarctica presentation pack. As well as further information about the stars of this issue, it included the five gummed stamps, the miniature sheet and the first day cover.  $29.90
Limited Edition Included in the limited edition was a specially designed first day cover signed by Peter Beggs, Chief Executive, Antarctica New Zealand, a unique numbered miniature sheet, and colour separations of the $3.00 stamp.  $135.00
First Day Cover
First Day Cover

Product Listing for Ross Dependency and Greenland Joint Issue: From Pole to Pole

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Image Title Description Price
Miniature Sheet Greenland mint, used or cancelled miniature sheet. $4.70
Miniature Sheet Joint issue mint, used or cancelled miniature sheet. $3.00
Miniature Sheet First Day Cover Joint issue first day cover with miniature sheet affixed. Cancelled on the first day of issue $3.50

Technical information

Date of issue: 19 November 2014
Number of stamps: Five gummed stamps
Stamps and first day covers designed by: New Zealand Post, Wellington, New Zealand
Denominations: 80c, $1.40, $2.00, $2.50 and $3.00
Printer and process: Southern Colour Print Ltd by offset lithography
Number of colours: Four process colours
Stamp size and format: 33mm diameter round
Paper type: Tullis Russell 104gsm red phosphor gummed stamp paper
Number of stamps per sheet: 10
Perforation gauge: 14.48
Spacial blocks: Plate/imprint blocks, barcode A blocks, and logo and value blocks were available for this issue.
Period of sale: These stamps remained on sale until 18 November 2015.