Since 1993, the United Nations has worked to increase global awareness of endangered species through a special set of commemorative postal stamps released each year. This year's set was released today, and features an array of 12 beautifully drawn endangered marine animals.

The US stamps include:
Hippocampus denise (Denise's pygmy seahorse)
Rhincodon typus (Whale shark)
Sphyrna lewini (Scalloped hammerhead)
Scleropages formosus (Asian arowana)

The Swiss (Franc) stamps depict:
Arapaima gigas (Arapaima)
Cetorhinus maximus (Basking shark)
Pristis pristis (Largetooth sawfish)
Acipenser baerii (Siberian sturgeon)

Finally, the European stamps feature:
Cheilinus undulatus (Humphead wrasse)
Carcharodon carcharias (Great white shark)
Manta birostris (Giant manta ray)
Polyodon spathula (Paddlefish)

The mixed-media illustrations that comprise the twenty-second set of stamps in the series are all by American artist Amadeo Bachar, who has a background both in scientific illustration (masters certificate) and marine biology (bachelor of science). His art has been featured by National Geographic, Scientific American, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and others. The drawings included in the stamp set were done using graphite, watercolor, and Photoshop. See more of Bachar's artwork at www.abachar.com

[United Nations Postal Administration]