WASHINGTON, DC, May 11, 2011 – The U.S. Postal Service today unveiled a new postage stamp to raise money to protect endangered species, including tigers, rhinos and marine turtles. The stamp features an Amur tiger cub and is the result of a 10-year effort led by World Wildlife Fund (WWF), in partnership with the U.S. Postal Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other international conservation organizations.
The Save Vanishing Species stamp will go on sale in September for a premium above the normal first-class rate and will be available for purchase at all U.S. post offices. All proceeds raised will go to benefit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Multinational Species Conservation Funds, which support efforts by numerous conservation organizations, including WWF, to protect wild populations of tigers, rhinos, elephants, great apes and marine turtles. Some of these efforts by WWF have included:
- Surveying tigers and their prey in Nepal
- Collaring and tracking elephants in Mozambique
- Reducing marine turtle bycatch in Gabon
- Restoring rhino populations to protected areas in India
- Preventing the spread of tuberculosis in elephants in Nepal
“This is an easy way for individuals to use their purchasing power to help save vanishing species every time they mail a letter,” said Ginette Hemley, senior vice president of conservation strategy and science at WWF. “By purchasing these stamps, anyone can play a direct role in protecting some of our most iconic and endangered wildlife.”
As Congress considers deep funding cuts to federal programs that protect these species, this stamp is an innovative way to ensure that species conservation continues to receive the support it needs. The stamp was created by the Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal Stamp Act, which passed Congress with overwhelming bipartisan support last year. WWF played a major role in the approval of the stamp, including proposing the original idea in 2000.
“We are extremely grateful to the U.S. Postal Service for creating a wildlife stamp that is not only beautiful, but also gives the public a chance to help preserve these magnificent animals in the wild,” said Hemley.