The king penguin’s head, chin and throat are metallic black, with bright golden orange ear patches outlined in black that stretch to its neck. Its upper breast is light orange, which fades into white on its belly. The upper part of its bill is black, and the lower part orange. Chunghwa Post asked Yuan Hsiao-wei, an associate professor of National Taiwan University, to plan a set of four stamps and a miniature sheet on king penguins. The designs of the four stamps and the miniature sheet follow:
1. Courtship: The males and females make calls and adopt various poses to attract the opposite sex. To attract females, males raise their heads and stretch their necks until their bills are almost directly pointing to the sky. At the same time, they partially close their eyes, stretch their wings outwards and stand on their heels. After pairing off, a complicated courting process begins.
2. Juvenile: A king penguin female lays only one egg at a time. The parents take turns incubating it. They place it between their feet and warm it with their bodies. After some 60 days, the almost naked chick is hatched. After about three weeks, the chick grows a set of downy brown feathers.
3. Swimming and Diving: The king penguins are excellent swimmers. They move through the water at speeds of up to eight kilometers per hour by porpoising (swimming underwater for some distance, emerging in a graceful arc to take a breath, and then submerging again). The sight of king penguins getting into water is very comical. Appearing to be wearing diving uniforms, they swagger in a single file toward the water and take deep bows before choosing a proper angle and diving into water.
4. Gliding and Preening: In order to move efficiently on snowy ground, the birds often "glide" over the ice on their stomachs, propelling themselves with their wings and feet. Penguin feathers are very different from other birds: short (with long, flat central shafts) and overlapping, they provide excellent protection from wind and water.
5. Colony: King penguins feed on small fish and squid, and by hunting in groups, they can pass on information about food to each other. What’s more, by huddling together they can keep each other warm amid the bitter Antarctic cold.
(1) First Day Cover in small size to be sold at NT$2.00 apiece. (2) First Day Cover in large size to be sold at NT$3.00 apiece. (3) Folder especially prepared for the stamps to be sold at NT$5.00 apiece. (4) Folder with crystal mount for better protection of the stamps to be sold at NT$5.00 apiece. (5) Folder with crystal mount for better protection of the miniature sheet to be sold at NT$8.00 apiece. (6) Loose-leaf stamp album page with plastic cover to be sold at NT$16.00 apiece. (7) Pre-cancelled First Day Cover affixed with a low-valued stamp to be sold at NT$7.00 apiece. (8) Pre-cancelled First Day Cover affixed with a complete set of stamps to be sold at NT$33.00 apiece. (9) Pre-cancelled First Day Cover affixed with a miniature sheet to be sold at NT$18.00 apiece. (10) Stamp folio to be sold at NT$120.00 apiece. To purchase these items, the public can go directly to the post offices, or order on line at https://stamp.post.gov.tw