“With the world currently focussed on saving the Rhino, it is opportune that we are able to issue this set of commemorative stamps featuring, amongst others, the rhinoceros calves”. Johan van Wyk, Senior Manager of Philatelic Services at the South African Post Office (SA Post Office) was speaking at the issuing of the Baby Big Five Commemorative Stamps on 12 July 2012.
This set of stamps depicts the young of the original Big Five – lion cubs, elephant calves, buffalo calves, leopard cubs and rhino calves. The Big Five were named because of the difficulty in hunting them as well as the level of danger involved. “What made them dangerous is the fact that they fought back, especially when they were cornered or had been wounded”, according to van Wyk.
These animals have become a key feature in South African wildlife, with many tourists making every effort to visit game farms where they hope to catch a glimpse of one or all of the Big Five.
“We wanted to depict the diversity of African wildlife and we commissioned renowned wildlife artist, Alan Ainslie,” says Van Wyk. Ainslie was also responsible for the illustration of the big five stamps issued in 2001. For those collectors who are passionate about the big Five, your thematic collection will not be complete without this set of five stamps depicting the big Five babies."
In total 300,000 stamps have been printed and will be available at all post office branches or can be ordered online at www.virtualpostoffice.co.za.