Wallis and Futuna

Paleontology like stamps of Wallis and Futuna

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Wallis and Futuna, officially the Territory of the Wallis and Futuna Islands or Territoire des îles Wallis-et-Futuna, Fakauvea and Fakafutuna: Uvea mo Futuna), is a French island collectivity in the South Pacific between Tuvalu to the northwest, Fiji to the southwest, Tonga to the southeast, Samoa to the east, and Tokelau to the northeast. Though both French and Polynesian, Wallis and Futuna is distinct from the entity known as French Polynesia. [R1]

The first stamps used in the islands were overprinted stamps of New Caledonia. Since May 1920, stamps inscribed Wallis and Futuna were used. [R2]
Tortoise figure on stamps of Wallis and Futuna 1990
Tortoise figure on stamps of Wallis and Futuna 1990, MiNr.: 575, Scott: 389.

Unfortunately to date there are no Paleontology related stamps issued by the country. Some websites and philatelic literature mention the following stamp as tortoise fossil (12.02.1990).
Although this stamp is enscribed "Fossile de Tortue", it is not a fossil, but a highly stylized sculpture, in volcanic rock, of a turtle with algae on its carapace, discovered during archaeological excavations between 1984 and 1989 on the islands.

CNRS-ORSTOM French abbreviation in the bottom-right corner of the stamps means:
  • CNRS - Centre national de la recherche scientifique. In English: The National Center for Scientific Research.
  • ORSTOM - l'Office de la recherche scientifique et technique outre-mer. In English: The French Research Institute for Development.

  •   [R1] Wallis and Futuna Islands: Wikipedia, FlagCounter
  •   [R2] Postal History and Philately of Wallis and Futuna Islands: Wikipedia.
              Links to official website of the Post Authority, stamp catalog and a list of new stamps of Wallis and Futuna Islands are here

Many thanks to Dr. Peter Voice from Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences, Western Michigan University, for the draft page review and his very valuable comments.

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