Jersey Stamps: Links with China - woodland wildlife

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02 September 2019
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New stamps from Jersey Post look at woodland wildlife recorded in both Jersey and China.

In recent years, China and Jersey have shared many exchanges between schoolchildren, businessmen and women as well as government representatives and dignitaries. The purposes of the visits are wide-reaching and can involve exploring each other’s cultures and ways of life.

 

The fifth and final instalment in the series looking at Jersey’s natural links with China features some of the species of woodland wildlife that have been recorded in both locations, each representing two ends of the same eco-zone, the Palearctic.

 

  • Stoat Mustela erminea 

The Stoat is also known as the short-tailed weasel and belongs to the same family of small mammals as badgers, mink, ferrets, polecats, wolverine and the like. Stoats live in woodland and other habitats which offer cover from predators such as foxes and birds of prey. However, their preference for hunting small rodents, birds and rabbits means you are more likely to spot one in in marshland close to woods, sand dunes and lowland farms. Once common in Jersey, there have not been any reported sightings in the Island in recent years. 

 

  • Barn Owl Tyto alba

The Barn Owl has golden coloured upper parts with silver-grey and white underparts and a distinctive white heart-shaped face. Although not strictly a woodland animal, Barn Owls may roost or nest in any tree that meets their requirements. They generally live in open areas of countryside, on farmland or at woodland edges, particularly where there is a high number of small mammals for feeding.

 

  • Long-eared Owl Asio otus

The Long-eared Owl takes its name from the ear tufts on its head, which raise when the owl is alarmed. A very vocal species, it makes an array of hoots, squeals, barks, and other noises. Long-eared Owls breed in many Jersey woodlands and valleys and may be joined in winter by birds from further north. 

 

  • Long-tailed field mouse Apodemus sylvaticus

Also known as the Wood Mouse, the Long-tailed Field Mouse is typically found in woodlands but can also be found throughout arable land, scrub, sand dunes, heathland and hedgerows. The mice generally create nests underground or in trees and occasionally in nest boxes put up for birds. They have a varied diet of seeds, roots, fruit, nuts and insects. The Long-tailed Field Mouse lives in abundance in Jersey, whilst Asia is populated by its close relative, the South China Field Mouse.

 

  • Hawfinch Coccothraustes coccothraustes

Hawfinches are found in large areas of mature woodland that offer a good mix of tree species. One of the stealthiest birds, the Hawfinch is incredibly shy with a quiet and weak song. As such, it presents a huge challenge to bird watchers. These birds love to feed on fruit stones and seeds and have a bill powerful enough to split a cherry stone. Hawfinches do not breed in Jersey but may be seen in most years.

 

 

  • Red Squirrel Sciurus vulgaris

Instantly recognisable with its bushy tale and pointed ears, the Red Squirrel, introduced into Jersey from England and Europe, is widespread in the Island and is regularly spotted dashing between trees and even across the grass. Inhabitants of forest areas, they can be found living in coniferous trees and broadleaved woodland. Organised creatures, they plan for the colder winter months by storing food away in nooks, holes in trees or underground in preparation for when food is scarce.

 

Stamp details

Design: Wang Huming and Martin Morck

Printer: Cartor Security Printing, France

Print process: four colour offset lithography

Stamp die size: 36mm x 36mm

Issue date: 2 September 2019

 

Jersey Post extends thanks to Dr. H. Glyn Young for his invaluable help in the preparation of this stamp issue.

 

To order the stamps, visit the Jersey Post website.

Images copyright Jersey Post

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