French Antarctic Territory

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French Southern and Antarctic Lands - Territoire des Terres australes et antarctiques françaises (TAAF)


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The Arms of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands The National Flag

The French Southern and Antarctic Lands have formed a territoire d'outre-mer (an overseas territory) of France since 1955. The area consists of the following islands and territories:

  • Kerguelen (Archipel des Kerguelen), a group of volcanic islands in the southern Indian Ocean, southeast of Africa, approximately equidistant between Africa, Antarctica and Australia;
  • St. Paul and Amsterdam islands (Îles Saint Paul et Amsterdam), a group to the north of Kerguelen;
  • Crozet Islands (Îles Crozet), a group in the southern Indian Ocean, south of Madagascar;
  • Adélie Land (Terre Adélie), the French claim on the Antarctica continent;
  • Scattered Islands (Îles Éparses), a dispersed group of islands around the coast of Madagascar.

The islands are all uninhabited, except for some scientific and military posts and support staff.

National arms

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The arms were granted on September, 4, 1958.

The quarters represent the islands of Kerguelen (cabbage), New Amsterdam (lobster), Crozet (penguin) and the Adelie Land on Antarctica proper (iceberg). The supporters are two sea elephants.

The three stars are elements of the uniform of the governor at the time, Vice Admiral M. Richert.

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The arms of the individual islands on unofficial coins from 2011

Heraldic collector's items