February 8, 2015

1446 FRANCE (New Caledonia) - Lagoons of New Caledonia: Reef Diversity and Associated Ecosystems (UNESCO WHS)

Your sumptuous lagoon that the world courts
And your jungle where our first flower was born
Sing in the universe this exquisite romance
Of a victorious island and a triumphant lagoon.

When the nature, inventing a new mode of reproduction, created the first flower, did it in New Caledonia, located back then in the middle of a continent called Gondwana, 130 milion years ago. The chosen plant, Amborella trichopoda, a primitive flower, even today devoid of perfume, is the mother of all the flowers of the planet; she met the dinosaurs. The Caledonian archipelago is a paradise for botanists; it is the third country in the world for its endemic flora; and number one worldwide for biodiversity of plants. As for its lagoon, the largest in the world, ranked among the most beautiful, is one of the three inscribed in humanity's heritage for its richness and exceptional beauty. Feather stars, sea whips, corals, soft corals are also like the flowers. It is the triumph of New Caledonia on land and in the sea.

About the stamp

The stamp, designed by Claude Andreotto, was issued on September 8, 2014, to mark the 10th Anniversary of the Sauveteurs en Mer. The Société Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer (SNSM) is a French voluntary organisation founded in 1967, which opened the first lifeboat station in New Caledonia, in Nouméa, on January 2004, followed in next years by other three, at Koumac, (Lifou), and Thio. The boat depicted on the stamp, SNS 270, received in 2007 and called Croix du sud (The Southern Cross), is a powerful 2nd class boat, driven by 2 IVECO engines of 330 CV enabling her to reach a maximum speed of 28 knots. This boat coming from the Sibiril yard at Carantec, in Brittany and equipped by the workshops with the SNSM in Saint-Malo, has an appreciably increased range, which extends from the island of the Pines until Foa by sea of force 6 and makes it possible to perform rescue operations outside the lagoon. 

This is a post for Sunday Stamps II-8, run by Violet Sky from See It On A Postcard. The theme of this week is:Ships, boats. Click here to visit Violet’s blog and all the other participants.

Sender: Philatelic Bureau of New Caledonia
Sent from Nouméa (Grande Terre / New Caledonia), on 29.01.2015


  1. I love your description of the first flower, I always think of ferns and the dinosaurs but now I will remember the amborella. New Caledonia sounds very inviting.

    1. Unfortunately the words don't belong to me. I just copied what it says on the card. :)

  2. Amazing information - thanks for sharing it and the stamps.

  3. That lifeboat exudes power - what a superb stamp.

  4. Now I want to go to New Caledonia and snorkel over the coral reefs!