By Ronnie Weston| February 23, 2012 at 11:01 PM CST - Updated June 26 at 3:44 PM
LITTLE ROCK (AGFC) – Five birds of prey are featured on a set of U.S. Postal Service stamps that are now on sale.
The northern goshawk, peregrine falcon, golden eagle, osprey and northern harrier are on the 85-cent definitive Birds of Prey stamps. All these birds are seen in Arkansas, although some are infrequent visitors.
The stamps can be used with virtually all domestic First-Class Mail weighing up to 3-ounces. The stamps are available at post offices nationwide, online at usps.com and by phone at 800-782-6724.
The powerful birds are depicted in colorful portraits and shown from the neck up. The artwork appears against a plain, white background. Illustrator Robert Giusti of Bridgewater, CT, worked with art director Howard E. Paine of Delaplane, VA, on this issuance. Giusti painted the original designs in acrylic on canvas board.
Birds of prey, also known as raptors, thrive in diverse habitats and live on every continent except Antarctica. The roughly 500 species of raptors include birds that hunt by day, such as falcons, eagles and harriers and birds that hunt by night — owls. They share several common characteristics, such as being carnivorous and using their powerful talons to capture prey. Their exceptionally keen eyesight allows them to see small objects in detail, even from a great distance. As predators high on the food chain, raptors play an important role in maintaining the balance of nature.
How to Order the First-Day-of-Issue Postmark
Customers have 60 days to obtain the first-day-of-issue postmark by mail. They may purchase new stamps at a local Post Office, at The Postal Store website at usps.com/shop or by calling 800-STAMP-24. They should affix the stamps to envelopes of their choice, address the envelopes (to themselves or others) and place them in larger envelopes addressed to:
Birds of Prey Stamp
P.O. Box 92282
Washington, DC 20090-2282
After applying the first-day-of-issue postmark, the Postal Service will return the envelopes by mail. There is no charge for the postmark. All orders must be postmarked by March 20, 2012.
How to Order First-Day Covers
The Postal Service also offers first-day covers for new stamp issues and Postal Service stationery items postmarked with the official first-day-of-issue cancellation. Each item has an individual catalog number and is offered in the quarterly USA Philatelic catalog. Customers may request a free catalog by calling 800-STAMP-24 or writing to: