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Native New Zealand freshwater fish - new stamps

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Five of New Zealand's fascinating freshwater fish species are highlighted in a new issue from New Zealand Post.

Issued on 1 March, the stamps feature five of the forty different fish which have been identified in New Zealand's fresh waters. Around three-quarters of these species are currently under threat, making these stamps an important way of educating the public about wildlife conservation.

New Zealand fish are particularly endangered when compared to the fish of many other countries, because of specific threats posed by destruction of habitat, migration barriers and the introduction of predatory species such as trout.

The stamps

The five stamps are:

  • $1.00 Lowland Longjaw Galaxias - named after its distinctive jaw and found in only a few inland streams and the Kauru and Kakanui Rivers. Less than 250 mature adults are now in existence.

  • $1.80 Redfin bully, Toitoi - a distinctive red-marked fish whose male of the species guards the female's eggs until they hatch. The juveniles of the species wash out to sea and return to fresh water as juveniles.

  • $2.20 Longfin eel, Tuna - found only in New Zealand and with a life span of up to 100 years, the Longfin eel can grow up to two metres in length but has been a victim of over-fishing.

  • $2.70 Lamprey, Kanakana, Piharau - a primitive jawless fish which if often mistaken for an eel. Adults spend most of their life at sea, returning to fresh water to breed.

  • $3.30 Torrentfish, Panoko - a species endemic to New Zealand which prefers fast-flowing water and can anchor itself to the riverbed with its pectoral fins, to prevent being washed away.

Issue details

Issue date: 1 March 2017

Design: Stephen Fuller, Wellington

Printer: Southern Colour Print

Print process: Offset lithography

Perforation: 14.4 x 14

For more information on the stamps and associated products, visit the New Zealand Post website.

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