Federal Duck Stamp Contest Regulations Available
The Duck Stamp Contest is the
only federally legislated
art competition in the country. These regulations are published each
year and include important information for any artist entering
Duck Stamp Contest Regulations
If this is your first time entering the contest, here is some important
information to note from the regulations:
Artists may submit their artwork beginning on June
1, 2013. No early entries will be accepted. All artwork
must be postmarked no later than midnight August 15, 2013.
Special Note: After
the Duck Stamp contest is judged, art is returned via Federal Express to the address submitted on the contest entry
form. Please do not submit art with a P.O. box address; also please submit working phone numbers. Please send changes
address via email to Duck
Stamp Office, or send a certified letter to the Federal
Duck Stamp Office, 4401 N. Fairfax Dr., MS 4070, Arlington, VA 22203.
Find out what art characteristics
make good stamp
Each year, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service chooses five species any which
of one may be painted. For 2013, the species are:
- Cinnamon Teal
- Blue-winged Teal
If you have any questions, please contact Laurie Shaffer at
the Federal Duck Stamp Office.
History of the Federal Duck Stamp Contest
The first Federal Duck Stamp, designed by Jay "Ding" Darling in 1934
at President Franklin D. Roosevelt's request, depicts two mallards about
to land on a marsh pond. In subsequent years, other noted wildlife artists
were asked to submit designs. The first contest in 1949 was open to any
U.S. artist who wished to enter. Sixty-five artists submitted 88 design
entries that first year. The number of entries rose to 2,099 in 1981.
This is the only art competition of its kind sponsored by the U.S. Government.
A panel of noted art, waterfowl, and philatelic authorities is appointed by the Secretary of the Interior to judge each competition. Winners receive no compensation for their work, other than a pane of stamps carrying their design. Winning artists may sell prints of their designs, which are sought after by hunters, conservationists, and art collectors.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service mails contest regulations to interested artists each spring. Artists may choose their own medium and designs may be in black-and-white or full color, and must measure 10 inches wide by 7 inches high.
History of the Federal Duck Stamp
President Franklin D. Roosevelt established the Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp, or Duck Stamp, as it is affectionately called, with the stroke of his pen in 1934. In signing the Migratory Bird Hunting Stamp Act, one of the first and most successful of conservation programs in this Nation's history was begun.
As seen in the illustrations on the Federal Duck Stamp Program homepage, art is used in the creation of each year's stamp. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service sponsors a stamp-design contest annually, with wildlife artists from across the nation submitting their work for judging by a panel of artists, philatelists and wildlife experts. The winning art is used on the next year's stamp.
The Act mandates that all waterfowl hunters 16 years of age or older purchase a stamp. Proceeds from sales, less the cost of producing the stamp, are used to purchase wetlands and associated upland habitats for inclusion in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's National Wildlife Refuge System. Since the program's inception, Duck Stamp sales have raised more than $800 million to conserve over 6 million acres of crucial habitat throughout the United States and its territories. With this record of achievement, the Duck Stamp program has been called "one of the most successful conservation program ever initiated."
Fortunately, the sale of stamps is not restricted to hunters. All citizens can purchase the stamp, which can be used as an annual "season pass" to national wildlife refuges charging entrance fees. Conservationists purchase the stamp because they know that 98 cents of every dollar invested in the stamp permanently conserves wildlife habitat for future generations; a small investment will bring you and your family long-term returns. Philatelists purchase the stamp as a collectible—a $1 stamp purchased in 1934 may bring as much as $750 for a stamp in mint condition to about $250 for a stamp in poor condition today.
In providing the means to acquire habitat, the Duck Stamp Program offers a simple way for all citizens to participate in the conservation of a natural resource we all share: migratory birds.