Bulletin 651- 31-10-2007- Udawalawe National Park

Department of Posts,
Postal Headquarters,
D. R. Wijewardane Mawatha,
Colombo 01000

The Philatelic Bureau of the Department of Posts will issue four new postage stamps in the denominations of Rs. 5.00, Rs. 15.00, Rs. 40.00 and Rs. 45.00 on 31st October 2007, depicting the Udawalawe National Park and its selected animals, as a second set in the series of National Parks of Sri Lanka.

Udawalawe National Park, which holds a unique place in the wild life conservation web in Sri Lanka, is situated in a dry and intermediate zone bounded by Moneragala District in Uva Province and Ratnapura District in the Sabaragamuwa Province. It is 30,821 hectares in extent and was declared a National Park on 30th June, 1972.

It is situated 165 km away from Colombo. The entrance the park is situated near the 11th mile post on the Thimbolketiya and Thanamalwila Highway. Apart from the vast plain there are small mountains and hills rise above it occasionally. The Kaltota Mountain and Diyawinna Waterfall are in the North. Rocks like Bambaragala and Remenikotha and Uggala Mountain are in the West.

The North Eastern Monsoon gives rain. It has a short period of dry climate during the months of February and March. This sometime extends from May up to the end of September.

Several ancient places, which are of cultural value, have been at Veheramankada and Veheragolla. Muwanpalessa and Seenuggala had been ancient villages and there had been ancient settlements. Muwanpalessa, Dangala and Buruthagolla tanks, which were used for agricultural purpose then, have helped the survival of wildlife later.

Several colonies of plants are found in this park. Natural vegetation had been cleared due to chena cultivation, which existed prior to the declaration of this area as a park. Thus there are lots of open plains in this park. There are Burutha, Halmilla, Kaluwara, Kolon, Milla, Kon, Thunumella, Nelli and Bulu are among the large trees.

This park is rich in fauna, it provides shelter to many animal species who are threatened and deprived of their natural habitats due to the Udawalawe Development Project. Mainly elephants, deer, sambur, wild boar, wild buffalo, serpents, reptiles, butterflies, amphibians and birds can also be seen in the park.

Facilities for tourists have been improved. Tickets can be purchased at the entrance of the park. Circuit Bungalows have been erected for the benefit of wildlife enthusiasts.

Elephant Transit Home

The Elephant Transit Home was set up by the Department of Wildlife Conservation on 6th October, 1995. The main objective of establishing this home was to provide shelter, food and security for the destituted, wounded or motherless baby elephants until they will be released to the jungle. In launching the Foster Parent Scheme, the Department of Wildlife Conservation has made arrangements to seek assistance from the public and private sectors in order to give opportunities to them to take care of elephants until they release to jungle.

Water Buffalo – Bubalus bubalis (Rs. 5.00)

The wild water buffalo is a large and powerful animal. The general colour of the body, in dry conditions is ash. When the skin is wet, the colour darkness to almost brownish-black. The male is larger than the female. A mature male is about 5 feet in height. It generally carries much longer and heavier horns. It mainly lives in the Dry zone. They live in groups, the leadership of which remains with a mature male. The wild water buffalo is very dependent on the availability of water and spends much of its time wallowing in mud holes and shallow pools. The water buffalo is mainly a grazer and feeds in the morning and evening. The gestation period is about 300-340 days. It usually gives birth to one calf at a time. It’s life span is about 25 to 29 years.

Sri Lankan Elephant – Elephas maximus maximus (Rs. 15.00)

Sri Lankan Elephants belong to the order Proboscidae, containing the largest of all living terrestrial mammals. The male is generally larger than the female. Adult male’s height is approximately nine feet, six inches. They are herbivores. They eat grasses, leaves, bark and fruit. They generally pay more serious attention to feeding in the early morning and afternoon. Midday is a resting period. The period of gestation is 23 months. The life span is approximately 60 years. Today, the number of wild elephants in Sri Lanka is around 4,500-5,000.

The Ceylon Ruddy Mongoose –Herpestes smithil (Rs. 40.00)

The Ceylon Ruddy Mongoose belongs to the order Carnivora and Family Viverridae. It is normally solitary or as a couple. They are ash brown in colour. Always it may be recognised, even at a distance, by its characteristic habit of carrying its tail with the black tip curved upwards. The normal food of this mongoose is birds, small mammals and reptiles. Therefore it is a Carnivore. The female probably gives birth to 2-3 young.

Grey Langur – Semnopithecus entellus (Rs. 45.00)

The Grey Langur belongs to the order Primates and class Mammalia. They are large and fairly terrestrial. They are grey, with a black face. They are mostly found in the dry zone. They feed on leaves, fruit, seeds and flowers and live in medium to large groups, sleeping on branches during night; usually with one dominant male. The female gives birth to one offspring.

Philatelic Details

Date of issue2007.10.31
DesignerSudath Jayawardane (Rs.5, Rs.45 Stamps & Rs.50 MS)
Pulasthi Ediriweera (Rs.15, Rs.40 Stamps & Rs.55 MS)
Stamp size40mm ‹ 30.769mm
Printing processOffset Lithography
Sheet Composition100 stamps per sheet
Perforations13  ‹ 13
PrinterDepartment of Government Printing, Sri Lanka
Colours used4 Process Colours
Paper102 gsm security stamp paper
Quantity printedRs.5.00 – 1,000,000
Rs.15.00 – 750,000
Rs.40.00 – 500,000
Rs.45.00 – 500,000

Catalogue Codes

Rs.5 stamp (Water Buffaloes)Sg:LK 1914, Mi:LK 1665A, Sn:LK 1628, Yt:LK 1618, WAD:LK049.07
Rs.15 stamp (Herd of Elephants)Sg:LK 1915, Mi:LK 1666A, Sn:LK 1629, Yt:LK 1619, WAD:LK050.07
Rs.40 stamp (Ruddy Mongoose)Sg:LK 1916, Mi:LK 1667A, Sn:LK 1630, Yt:LK 1620, WAD:LK051.07
Rs.45 stamp (Common Langur)Sg:LK 1917, Mi:LK 1668A, Sn:LK 1631, Yt:LK 1621, WAD:LK052.07
Rs.50 MSSg:LK MS1918a, Mi:LK BL106, Sn:LK 1631a, Yt:LK BF98, WAD:LK050MS.07
Rs.55 MSSg:LK MS1918b, Mi:LK BL107, Sn:LK 1630a, Yt:LK BF99, WAD:LK052MS.07


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