New Fed­eral and Ju­nior Duck Stamps now on sale

Record Observer - - Sports -

The 83rd Fed­eral Mi­gra­tory Bird Hunt­ing and Con­ser­va­tion Stamp, as it is of­fi­cially called, de­buted at a special event on June 24 hosted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at Bass Pro Shops’ flag­ship re­tail store in Spring­field, Mo.

The stamp fea­tures a pair of trum­peter swans in flight painted by wildlife artist Joseph Haut­man of Ply­mouth, Minn. Last fall, a panel of five judges chose Haut­man’s art from among 157 en­tries at the Fed­eral Duck Stamp Art Con­test, held at the Na­tional Con­ser­va­tion Train­ing Cen­ter in Shep­herd­stown, W.Va. This was Haut­man’s fifth Fed­eral Duck Stamp Con­test win, ty­ing him as the lead­ing Duck Stamp artist of all time.

A pair of Ross’s geese painted by Stacy Shen, 16, of Fre­mont, Calif., is de­picted on the new Ju­nior Duck Stamp, which is also now on sale. Shen’s art was cho­sen from among best-of-show win­ners from states, the Dis­trict of Columbia, and sev­eral U.S. ter­ri­to­ries at the Na­tional Ju­nior Duck Stamp Art Con­test held in April at the J.N. “Ding” Dar­ling Na­tional Wildlife Refuge in Sani­bel, Fla.

The stamps are avail­able for pur­chase on­line, at many sport­ing goods and re­tail stores, and some post of­fices (Fed­eral stamps only), and at some na­tional wildlife refuges.

The Fed­eral Duck Stamp pro­gram has raised more than $800 mil­lion to pro­tect more than 5.7 mil­lion acres of habi­tat for birds and other wildlife. The ef­fort has been fu­eled largely by wa­ter­fowl hun­ters, who are re­quired to buy a Duck Stamp each year. Bird­ers and other out­doors en­thu­si­asts, artists, and stamp col­lec­tors also buy the stamps, rec­og­niz­ing their ben­e­fit to species and habi­tat con­ser­va­tion beyond wa­ter­fowl and their artis­tic value.

Ninety-eight per­cent of the pro­ceeds from Duck Stamp sales go to the Mi­gra­tory Bird Conser va­tion Fund, which sup­ports wet­land ac­qui­si­tion and conser va­tion ease­ments for the Na­tional Wildlife Refuge Sys­tem.

A cur­rent Fed­eral Duck Stamp is also good for free ad­mis­sion to any refuge that charges an entr y fee. Of the more than 560 refuges, many of­fer out­door recre­ational op­por­tu­ni­ties, in­clud­ing hunt­ing, fish­ing, bird watch­ing and pho­tog­ra­phy.

The Ju­nior Duck Stamp Art Con­test is the cul­mi­na­tion of a year-long ed­u­ca­tional pro­gram that helps stu­dents learn about wet­lands and wa­ter­fowl con­ser­va­tion, ex­plore their natural world, and cre­ate a paint­ing or draw­ing of a duck, goose, or swan as their “vis­ual term pa­per” to demon­strate what they learned.

The win­ning art at a na­tional con­test is made into a stamp the service sells for $5 to con­ser­va­tion­ists, ed­u­ca­tors, stu­dents, and the public. Pro­ceeds sup­port con­ser­va­tion ed­u­ca­tion. Since the first Ju­nior Duck Stamps went on sale in 1993, well over $1 mil­lion has been raised, which has been re-in­vested in this arts and sci­ence ed­u­ca­tion pro­gram.

The 2016 Fed­eral Duck Stamp Art Con­test to se­lect the 2017 stamp will be held Sept. 9 and 10 at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadel­phia. * * * Youth fish­ing der­byElks Lodge #1622 of Eas­ton is spon­sor­ing a free youth fish­ing derby from 8 a.m. to noon, Satur­day, July 9, for Caro­line and Tal­bot county youth grades K-8 at the Bay Street Ponds in Eas­ton.

The rain-or-shine event will in­clude pond fish­ing, metal de­tect­ing, face paint­ing, the Phillips Aquatic Bus, and more. Awards will be of­fered for three age groups for the largest and most fish. There will also be raf­fles and give-a-ways. Lunch and Rita’s Ices will be ser ved. Pre-reg­is­tra­tion is re­quested on­line (elks1622.org/fish­ingderby. html). * * * Duck blind know-it-all Ant lar­vae are di­gestible clumps of fat and pro­tein and are the main source of an­i­mal pro­tein for black bears over much of tem­per­ate North Amer­ica. Fol­low me on Twit­ter @csknauss Email me at ck­nauss@star­dem.com

PHOTO BY CHRIS KNAUSS

Eas­ton’s Clay Sch­midt, left, works the ball on of­fense dur­ing Freestate 2018s’ 13-8 vic­tory over Wave­lax, Thurs­day evening at An­napo­lis High School. Sch­midt scored four goals to lead Freestate.

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