The competition, in which the official postal institutions of the EUROPEAN countries participate, takes place this year on the theme of endangered national fauna in Europe. PTT represents our country in the competition “Best European stamp” with a stamp bearing the effigy of the Mediterranean monk seal. However, the seal on the commemorative stamp is not an ordinary Mediterranean monk seal. It is a seal well known throughout Turkey. Found in 2006 when he was on the verge of death, Badem was taken under protection by the Mediterranean Monk Seal Research Group of the Underwater Research Association (SAD-AFAG) and rehabilitated with the support of the late businessman Mustafa Koç and released into the wild in 2007.
DRAWING FROM THE PHOTO
SAD-AFAG coordinator and nature photographer Cem Orkun Kıraç took the immortal frame used by PTT just after Badem exited the wilderness. The photo of the participating Kıraç square was finalized with the work of designer Gamze Aksoy and vegetable painter Hülya Korkmaz. Cem Orkun Kıraç tells the story of photography and Badem: “PTT wanted to use the Badem orphan seal, which I photographed in 2007, on the stamp. Faced with this choice which made me very happy, I gave the photo at no cost. Then, instead of using the photograph directly, a memory pad was prepared with a beautiful design on it.
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HIGHLY USED BY PEOPLE
The almond is a very important animal for us. It was the first Mediterranean monk seal that we rehabilitated. Mustafa Koç took care of all Badem’s expenses. We sought help from the seal hospital in the Netherlands for his treatment, but a mistake was made about Badem and he got used to the person during his rehabilitation. This is a situation we would never prefer.
After releasing Badem into the wild, he was often seen on the shores as he was not afraid of humans. However, this mistake may have been the architect of our photo. We were expecting underwater photographers on the day we left for nature. We released him back into the wild, but Badem did not disappear underwater as expected. He entered the water, wandered a bit in the shallows, and sat down again on the gravel. At that point, I took a great photo. This image of Badem has become a stamp on PTT today. “
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MADE BETWEEN DATCA AND GOKOVA
Badem, who was tracked for 5 years after being released into the wild, was mainly seen in Datça and Gökova. Badem, who sometimes crosses paths on a boat and sometimes on a deckchair, is very used to people. Swimming alongside vacationers, Badem is occasionally troubled by this interest and gets noticed with biting news.