Birds of prey – new stamp issue by Kyrgyz Post

June 1st, 2015 got to know that Kyrgyz Post has released a set of stamps dedicated to the birds of prey. The issue consists of three items that were put into circulation on the 14th of May.

The first stamp of the series represents a bird of prey (Eagle) who starts his flight from the hand of the Hunter. The second stamp of the series represents a Falcon hovering in the still air and looking for a prey. In the background a typical mountain landscape of Kyrgyzstan is depicted. At the third stamp the final phase of falconry is presented: catching the prey (a Hare).

Since the ancient times, hunting was one of the main occupations of the Kyrgyz men. Using the hunting birds and hound dogs (Taigan breed) would be the height of the hunting skills and Kyrgyz people have been proving to obtain these skills for a long time.

Using hunting birds such as falcons, hawks and eagles, as well as their training, became an essential part of Kyrgyz culture. Kyrgyz history implies falcon to be not only a hunting bird, but also a totem and an object of reverence. The sacred white gyrfalcon (Ak Shumkar) is the devoted companion of Manas, the character from the Kyrgyz Epic. It is also worth mentioning that UNESCO included Falconry in its Lists of Intangible Cultural Heritage.