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Eight Nice Causes to Love the Migratory Chook Stamp


Not only for hunters, the Duck Stamp has raised greater than $1 billion for conservation, helped birds from Buffleheads to Bobolinks, and created a wealth of advantageous artwork within the course of. Shopping for a Duck Stamp is a constructive conservation motion any birder can take.

Initially revealed July 2014; up to date July 2022.

Among the many U.S.’s many spectacular federal and state lands, it pays to recollect the wildlife havens which can be the Nationwide Wildlife Refuge system, administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. This technique of greater than 500 areas is managed primarily for the good thing about wildlife, and they’re nice locations to see birds of all types, together with waterfowl, shorebirds, and songbirds.

Among the best methods to assist Nationwide Wildlife Refuges is to purchase a Migratory Chook Searching and Conservation Stamp, or “Duck Stamp,” yearly. It’s a win-win-win: it proudly proclaims your assist of public land, it funnels cash on to the refuge system (to the tune of some $40 million per 12 months), and it will get you free entry to the refuges all 12 months.

Shopping for a Migratory Chook Stamp is an easy and direct means for individuals to contribute to grassland and wetland conservation. In 2013, the New York Occasions ran a chunk on the annual stamp artwork competitors; now right here’s our personal record of eight causes to like the stamp:

1. Over $1 billion for conservation and counting. The primary stamp was issued in 1934. It price $1 (about $18 in right this moment’s {dollars}) and offered 635,001 copies. By regulation, the funds raised go on to habitat acquisition within the decrease 48 states. By now, stamp gross sales have surpassed $1 billion and helped to guard 6.5 million acres of wetland and grassland habitat.

2. A 73-year custom of gorgeous wildlife artwork. The Migratory Chook stamp is a fantastic collectible and an ideal inventive custom. Since 1949, the design of every 12 months’s duck stamp has been chosen in an open artwork contest. The 2022 stamp, exhibiting a pair of Redheads, was painted by James Hautman, a veteran of the competition who now has six wins to his identify (see a gallery of all stamps again to 1934).

3. A discount at $25. Ninety-eight cents of every greenback spent on a stamp goes on to land conservation for the Nationwide Wildlife Refuge System. This $25 buy is maybe the only easiest factor you are able to do to assist a legacy of wetland and grassland conservation for birds.

4. It’s rather more than geese. Waterfowl hunters have lengthy been the principle supporters for this system—the stamps are a requirement for anybody 16 or older who needs to hunt. However the funds profit scores of different chook species, together with shorebirds, herons, raptors, and songbirds, to not point out reptiles, amphibians, fish, butterflies, native crops, and extra. (See a full illustrated historical past of how the Duck Stamp helped save North American waterfowl, from Chook Academy.)

5. Save wetlands; save grasslands. Since 1958, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has used stamp revenues to guard “waterfowl manufacturing areas”—over 3 million acres—throughout the important Prairie Pothole Area. The identical program additionally protects declining prairie-nesting birds within the face of accelerating lack of grasslands. In consequence, refuges are among the many greatest locations to seek out grassland specialties similar to Bobolinks, Grasshopper Sparrows, Clay-colored Sparrows, Sedge Wrens, and others.

6. The advantages are attractive. A few of the most various and wildlife-rich refuges throughout the Decrease 48 have been acquired with stamp funds. Likelihood is there’s a wildlife refuge close to you that has benefited.

7. It’s your free move to refuges. A migratory chook stamp is a free move for a whole 12 months to all refuges that cost for admission—so your $25 might even prevent cash.

8. As birdwatchers, let’s get in on the key. Although it’s lengthy been a fixture in looking circles, the Migratory Chook Searching and Conservation Stamp is among the best-kept secrets and techniques in all of chook conservation. It’s time to purchase and present your stamp!

(Due to the Mates of the Migratory Chook/Duck Stamp for assist in making ready this put up.)

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