2014 49¢ Songbirds Imperforate
Set of 10
Nearly half of the world’s birds, about 4,000 species, are classified as passerines, or songbirds. They are typically small, migratory birds found throughout the world in a variety of habitats. We recognize them by their often-bright coloring and distinct songs.
The characteristic melody of a songbird is the product of its highly developed vocal organ, or song box, sometimes coupled with an elongated windpipe. Each species has its own set of songs and each bird performs its own version of those songs, varying the tone or pitch ever so slightly, so that his neighbors can identify the singer.
All vocalization by songbirds is a form of social communication, but not all songbird calls are considered “songs.” The songs as we recognize them are usually tunes used by males of the species in courtship and breeding, and in establishing and maintaining their territory. Females will sing on occasion and some species will even duet. Scientists think this may reinforce the bond of a mated pair.
For reasons yet unknown, songbirds make the best use of their vocal skills in the wee hours of the morning. Year-round, early risers appreciate the so-called “dawn chorus” each daybreak. In temperate climates, spring is the best time to catch the medley and it is officially recognized on International Dawn Chorus Day each May. Every year, thousands of bird lovers gather at events throughout the world to witness this beauty of birdsong.
Illustrator Robert Giusti painted the Western Meadowlark and the other songbirds in this set perched on a branch or fence post. His artwork can be seen on other stamps including: Tufted Puffins (#4737), Birds of Prey (4608-12), and a Cardinal (2480).
Value: 49¢ 1-ounce first-class letter rate
Issue Date: April 5, 2014
City: Dallas TX, at the Trinity River Audubon Center
Printed By: Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd.
Printing Method: Lithograph printed in booklets 20
Scarce Modern Imperforates
The modern imperforate stamps are one of the hottest stories around. In 2012, the U.S. Postal Service released some issues as press sheets. The sheets with die cut perforations were issued in limited quantities.
To the surprise of many collectors, officials then issued a small number of press sheets without perforations. The uncut sheets were only available in Kansas City, Missouri, yet most sold out immediately. In an instant, the imperforate stamp sheets became modern rarities. For example, only 75,000 Baseball All-Star se-tenant sheets were issued compared to 118,000 Bugs Bunny sheets with the 10th stamp imperforate.
In a controversial move, the editors of Scott Catalogue announced they would not list or give numbers to these stamps because they did not fit Scott guidelines. This decision was strongly debated since the imperforate stamps are valid for postage. They eventually decided to give the stamps minor numbers and have continued issuing imperforates in the years since.
Because they were issued in such limited quantities, these scarce modern imperforates can be difficult to find. Luckily Mystic purchased a small number of each imperforate stamp issued so you can add these modern rarities to your collection. Be one of the lucky few – order today.