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The US Federal Duck Stamp-- why should anyone care?

I am often surprised when I talk to fellow birders and peers that are interested in conservation... I am surprised that not only do they not know what the federal duck stamp program is for. Some haven't even heard of it, or think that it is a postage stamp!

I am also frustrated at the birders I talk to that scorn hunters, and yet themselves would not consider buying this stamp. It is estimated that 10% or less of non-hunters buy this stamp. That's pathetic. I have seen people crying that one should consider donating that $15 to other organizations instead, but if one researches into their organization of choice, one will find that most of them contribute far, far less than $0.98/dollar to the fund of choice ($0.98/dollar goes directly toward buying wetlands with the duck stamp program). Go ahead, plug in a popular charity that protects wetlands! See where your money really goes. www.charitynavigator.org/  With many of these groups you are paying the CEO, paying for junk mailings, paying for red tape, and so forth.

Why should birders and anyone that is concerned with wildlife conservation and wetland habitat (some of the most important habitat that is under threat in the USA) buy one of these danged things? birdingwithkennandkim.blogspot…

And what the crap is this stamp thing even about?? www.fws.gov/midwest/2013DuckSt…

Could you imagine the amount of habitat that could be preserved if all US citizens (that could afford to, of course-- I know all too well how tight finances can be) bought one of these things every year?

Imagine, only how much could be saved if only the people that have gone to and enjoyed one of these preserved locations bought a stamp? Actually, the duck stamp will give you a year's worth of free admission to many NWR's... that's pretty awesome.
Have you ever been on a National Wildlife Refuge? Welcome to duck stamp conservation! Many of these wildlife refuges were paid for with duck stamp money. blog.allaboutbirds.org/2013/06… (see map, mid-article)

This journal is not intended to guilt anyone. It is hopefully to educate about this program, and to get a mini-rant off my chest! :) Obviously this only really applies to people in the USA. I know some of you live in other places! :)
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:iconzalcoti:
Zalcoti Featured By Owner Sep 28, 2013   Digital Artist
I live near a wildlife refuge, and it is awesome!
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:iconkamakru:
Kamakru Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2013
YES YES YES OMG.
Or how about this: Ducks unlimited hold banquets every year, with auctions and donations and loads of money going toward wetland conservation - and I mean they pull in thousands from each of these events, and it's members are more than happy to donate. 
What many don't understand is that ironically, those 'evil hunters' are doing the most to preserve wildlife and the wetlands. And also, hunting IS also part of the preservation. Anyone who understands how wildlife populations work would know. 

Thanks for reminding me to go get my duck stamp for this year =D

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:iconatrafeathers:
atrafeathers Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
Love that you put this info up on here. because your right more people need to help out. and keep up the great artwork. :)
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:iconlvadams:
lvadams Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I had forgotten about this!  The first time I stumbled upon duck stamps, I didn't fully realize what they were (probably because I was too ADD in my wildlife management class).  I definitely plan to buy them, and maybe even contribute in the future.  :D  Thanks Nambroth!
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2013  Professional General Artist
Yay! :D
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:iconasazieagle:
asazieagle Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
As I said elsewhere, I didn't realize that the money directly funded refuges, I thought it was just a kind of hunting license. Thanks for sharing this information.
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:iconsiochanna:
Siochanna Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2013   Photographer
I'd never heard of this, thanks for the info.  And thanks for that Charity thing, too, that's great!  I'll be sharing both :)
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:iconaviscelox:
AvisCelox Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Honestly the birders who won't buy it because hunters do bother me the most. They would abandon the birds they claim to care so much about just because they don't like some of the people who use the stamp. Animal rights notions (often by meat-eaters!) don't always fit snugly with actual conservation.

It's a great program, it's needed to hunt waterfowl and gives you a free pass into many refuges, if you have the money and care about conservation you have reason to buy one.
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:iconmuzungumbaya:
MuzunguMbaya Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks for the info.  I'd heard of them, but never knew what they were for.
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:iconelijahsrevenge:
Elijahsrevenge Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Hobbyist
Gotta love this one! The ducks are all so beautiful. I don't hunt at the moment, but have family and friends who do and they talked about the duck stamps. It's a neat program and really great for the conservation of valuable lands.
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:icondustmeat:
Dustmeat Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
I love the duck stamp contest every year!  I am so glad that you link to it :)  I showed it to my mom and she printed out some of the winner ducks to hang in her cubicle.
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:iconthestormunleashed:
TheStormUnleashed Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
we actually have all of them in a collector's poster that's framed and hanging on our wall! haha
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Professional General Artist
Neat!
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:iconferalkid:
FeralKid Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013
Fantastic post!
we'll need to add artists to the list of people doing great work for wildlife and wild places!
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:iconchaostoglory:
ChaosToGlory Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013
Thank you for the info! I think I may start buying them.
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:icondarkwingdrake:
DarkwingDrake Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Really?! That`s awesome! So by buying one of these duck stamps not only am I helping fund protecting the wetlands, but I`ll get free admission to my local wildlife refuge? Nice! I`ve been wanting to take a boat right and visit the Horicon National wildlife refuge here in Wisconsin again, plus I love ducks :) 
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Professional General Artist
Yes, as far as I know NWRs accept these as passes, however it would probably be a good idea to call or ask them first! Things change sometimes.
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:icondarkwingdrake:
DarkwingDrake Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
that`s true. XD
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:iconpearcrumbs:
Pearcrumbs Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013
I hope there is something like this in Australia, but I'm unaware of it if it is :/
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:iconlyrak:
Lyrak Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
How did I not know about this???
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:iconnkfloofiepoof:
nkfloofiepoof Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013
I have honestly never heard of this before. I don't hunt, but I do support (properly regulated) hunting - if we didn't have hunters, we'd be overrun by problem species (snow geese ack). I'm also a huge supporter of conservation, so I'm definitely going to be sure to buy one of these when I have the cash to spare. Thank you for the info!
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:iconkatepfeilschiefter:
KatePfeilschiefter Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
I had no idea about any of this, I don't go to the post office often but I'll be sure to buy the stamp should I see it there.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
My question is, is it ONLY hosted in the midwest?  Seems a bit unfair since there are wetlands and habitat all over the country yet only those in the midwest/Ohio area can get in on the contest and such...
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Professional General Artist
No! The judging happens in a different location each year, but the contest is open to ANYONE in the USA, and pays for wetland conservation in the entire country. This year the judging just happens to be in Ohio. Last year it was in the SouthWest. The judging location is the only thing that moves.. the contest and the benefits are for the entire USA.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Okay, that makes me feel better, thank you.  **smiles**

My apologies if I seem less intellectually "there" right now, I'm just really overstressed right now...  >.<  If you want to know why, you can read this, if not, don't worry about it.
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Professional General Artist
No problem, and I am very sorry to hear about your stress! My family has gone through a similar ordeal. One thing that I have researched that may or may not help (but it can't hurt) is turkey tail mushrooms. I know you have a lot going on but I just wanted to pass that on in case it can help. Of course, always talk to a medical professional first.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks, I'll keep that in mind.  We're also looking at Essiac Tea and Bloodroot Extract, if I can get my mother to actually take them...  >.<  She keeps putting it off as if she just doesn't care...
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Professional General Artist
That's always really hard. My mom is stubborn too when it comes to health issues.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
**nods**
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:iconlyrak:
Lyrak Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
There is a national site as well. I had to hunt a bit but: www.fws.gov/duckstamps/
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Ah okay.
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:iconargentisix:
Argentisix Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That's actually pretty cool, I'll have to look into it more. :)
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:iconkreepingspawn:
KreepingSpawn Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Awesome!  Thanks for the info!  :D
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:icontreyos:
Treyos Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I always thought it was just a postage stamp thing done by the USPS, like the thousands of others that they do.
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:iconryua:
Ryua Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
While not all hunters are environmentally conscious, there are so many regulations about what you can hunt and when that you kind of end up becoming that way if you're going to hunt for any length of time. When I was younger, I was convinced that hunters were bad and cruel to animals, and the older I get, the more opposite my opinion becomes. I would hunt myself, if I had more time to do so. It's a much better way to get your meat.

I've gotten distracted from my point. I find it terribly sad that hunters are the ones doing most of the support of our wild areas. Everyone should support natural areas and preserves... and if hunting organizations are the only ones doing it properly, then they are the ones to support.
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Professional General Artist
Thank you for being open-minded to hunting. Sadly with any group of people, there will be bad apples and slobs. That said, there are a lot of us that care very deeply for animals, ecosystems, and habitats -- well beyond the scope of the particular species that we hunt.
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:iconryua:
Ryua Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Well, if you're going to harvest animals healthy enough to eat, they have to live in a healthy environment.
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:iconaoikita:
AoiKita Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Student General Artist
yay for conservation---there is an artists for conservation annual members event where I live --- (sadly I have no idea how to actually get my art into this event---it is way beyond me how it's entered despite joining their site/being a artist member), it looks cool. Robert Bateman was there last year as a guest talker.
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Professional General Artist
That's really cool! I will have to look it up!
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:iconaoikita:
AoiKita Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2013  Student General Artist
Sadly I last second realized it was on the exact same weekend as our fantasy con I attended my table at (this weekend), so I totally missed out again...for the third time XD...agh!  (previous 2 years due to feeling anxious of going up so far by myself-it requires the cable car to head up Grouse Mountain, which also requires a bus or car to get to of course)
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:iconra-meenan:
RA-Meenan Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've never heard of duck stamps, but I do donate to the Audubon Society and a local ranch that works on conserving habitat for barn owls and other local wildlife (they have an awesome egg cam every year for the new baby barn owls!). I may have to look into the duck stamp thing. =)
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:iconmorrokko:
MorRokko Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013
I buy one every year, for goose hunting once a year with my dad, and conservation!
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:iconfirenzelotus22:
FirenzeLotus22 Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Haha, I won first in the state of Utah for that stupid competition.
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Professional General Artist
I'm sorry you think it's stupid. First of state is a pretty big honor.
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:iconfirenzelotus22:
FirenzeLotus22 Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
My entry was hastily painted and colored, and I never expected to win. I wasn't even paying attention when they called out the winners because I was positive I wouldn't win... turned out, it was first. I was only the junior comp, but meh, guess it's still kinda cool. :P
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:iconaviscelox:
AvisCelox Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Well you have to keep in mind, a lot of the entries are done by schools, they probably just have the whole class enter the contest. I tied for first of my age group in my state.

From what I've seen the regular competition is very intense. People will practice for it a very long time.
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:iconwinternacht:
winternacht Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013   General Artist
Yay for duck stamps! So nice to see something like this on dA. I had art in the junior duck stamp when I was younger and did pretty good, but I need to work on my skills a bit to even think about entering the normal one.. soooo scary. XD Unfortunately some birders don't want to be involved with it because oh no, ~hunters use it~! I've even heard of people only willing to buy it if a separate one is made for birdwatchers. Like.. really? Grow up and buy the stamp to conserve the habitat! /addingtotheminirant
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:iconelementalspirits:
ElementalSpirits Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
As far as I know we have nothing like this in the UK, but I think this is a fantastic idea and really wish we had it. The closest we probably have is the RSPB and I often get surprised at how many people I know who are interested in wildlife yet don't support them (or any of their local reserves/charities). I wonder how they think these things manage to avoid being turned into houses...
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:iconkazali:
Kazali Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Wow, I never heard of this! I would've definitely bought one if I knew that the funds were used for conservation... someone needs better PR. Do people still use these as postage? I can't imagine a letter with a $15 stamp on it. 
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:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Professional General Artist
No, they are not regulated for postage at all. :) They are more of a collector's stamp, unless one is buying it as part of a hunting license.
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