Thu, Dec 25, 2014 - Page 3 News List

Greater Tainan announces official bird, tree, flower

By Tsai Wen-chu and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Flame trees, delonix regia, are shown in this photo taken in Greater Tainan on Tuesday. Flames trees, first imported to Taiwan during the Japanese colonial era, have been named the city’s official tree.

Photo: Tsai Wen-chu, Taipei Times

Greater Tainan Government on Tuesday selected the pheasant-tailed jacana, the delonix regia and the moth orchid to be the official bird, tree and flower respectively representing the city, after four years of tumultuous debates highlighting differences of opinions among residents.

The city’s emblem, resembling the Chinese character “south” (南), imitates the cornices of Chikahn Tower in the top half of the character while resembling the ancient gates of the city in the lower half, highlighting the ancient history of Greater Tainan, designer Yang Shih-hsien (楊士賢) said.

Yang said he also sought to incorporate elements of the black-faced spoonbill into the emblem, featuring parts of the spoonbill’s face and its beak, adding that together with the slightly upturned slopes of the upper part of the character, it symbolized hopes for the city to soar to greater heights.

City government officials said the initial votes for the city’s tree, flower and bird in 2010 were suspended due to heightened tensions among residents, and designs for the emblem were delayed due to alleged plagiarism.

The original design for the city emblem in 2011 was highly similar to Hong Kong’s city emblem and drew complaints.

Greater Tainan Government Secretary-General Chen Mei-ling (陳美伶) said the emblem chosen was not the emblem that garnered the most votes on the Internet and was instead chosen by a committee from the original nine candidates.

Department of Agriculture Director Hsu Han-ching (許漢卿) said the moth orchid received 31,200 votes, accounting for 31.84 percent of total votes, adding that the delonix regia received 52,900 votes, 53.99 percent of all votes, and the pheasant-tailed jacana received 43,935 votes, accounting for 44.84 percent of all votes.

Second in popularity were the flowers from the delonix regia with 22,000 votes, the camphor tree with 22,000 votes and the black-faced spoonbill with 36,000 votes.

The announcement was made by Greater Tainan Mayor William Lai (賴清德) on Tuesday.

“We hope that the presentation of the emblem and the city’s official flower, tree and bird brings city residents closer and unites them in a bid to develop the city further,” Lai said, adding that he hoped more people would notice Greater Tainan and that the city would progress in the future.

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