The 81st Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp debuted on Friday, June 27, at a special event hosted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Bass Pro Shops at the Department of the Interior in Washington, D.C.
The 2014-15 stamp features a pair of Canvasbacks painted by wildlife artist Adam Grimm of Burbank, South Dakota. Last fall, a panel of five judges chose Grimm’s art from among 202 paintings at the Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest. Grimm is a two-time contest winner; his painting of a Mottled Duck appeared on the 2000-01 stamp.
The stamps are available for purchase online, at many sporting goods and retail stores, and at some post offices and national wildlife refuges. The stamp costs $15.
Waterfowl hunters age 16 and older are required to purchase and carry a current Federal Duck Stamp, and the stamp is good for free admission to any refuge that charges an entry fee, but conservationists, birders, stamp collectors, and art lovers also buy the stamp as an investment in wetlands conservation for future generations.
Ninety-eight percent of the proceeds from the stamp go to the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund, which supports wetland acquisition for the National Wildlife Refuge System. Since 1934, sales of the stamp have raised more than $850 million, used to acquire and protect more than 6 million acres of wetlands on national wildlife refuges in all 50 states and U.S. territories.
The 2014 Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest will be held September 19-20 at the National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, West Virginia.