What We Do
In addition to being the only conservation revenue stamp, the Federal Duck Stamp is also unique in the way the stamp is created. Each year, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service holds an art contest, the only juried art competition sponsored by the federal government. Any artist 18 years or older may enter, and the winning artist sees his or her work featured as the design on the following year's Federal Duck Stamp.
Management and Conservation
For every dollar you spend on Federal Duck Stamps, ninety-eight cents goes directly to purchase vital habitat or acquire conservation easements for protection in the National Wildlife Refuge System. Since 1934, 6 million acres have been acquired using Federal Duck Stamp revenues. More than 300 national wildlife refuges were created or have been expanded using Federal Duck Stamp dollars. At least one refuge in nearly every state has benefitted from Duck Stamp dollars.
By law, proceeds from the sale of Federal Duck Stamps are deposited into the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund, which was established specifically to provide the Department of the Interior with monies to acquire migratory bird habitat.
The Migratory Bird Conservation Commission oversees the expenditure of Federal Duck Stamp funds and other monies in the fund to purchase and lease wetland habitat. The commission also reviews the use of Federal Duck Stamp dollars to purchase small natural wetlands and associated uplands for preservation as Waterfowl Production Areas.
You can also find out how many duck stamps have been sold each year since 1934 (note, sales figures are not up to the current year due to the fact that individual Duck Stamps are on sale for 3 years).
The Junior Duck Stamp Program is the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's premier conservation education initiative. The program teaches students across the nation conservation through the arts. Revenue generated by the sales of Junior Duck Stamps funds environmental education programs in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and several territories.
The Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest is open to the public; anyone can witness a bit of history in the making as judges select the winning art from among hundreds of entries.
If you can't make it to the contest, you can still see original Duck Stamp entries; the top entries each year tour the nation, exhibited at museums, refuges, festivals and other venues.
Federal Duck Stamps are miniature works of art, and they are prized by stamp collectors around the world. The stamp image is featured on products such as t-shirts, calendars, mugs and blankets, through the Duck Stamp Licensing Program.
Many states issue their own duck stamps. In some states, the stamps are purely a collector's item, but in others, the stamps have a similar role in hunting and conservation as Federal Duck Stamps. Some states hold contests to choose the art for their stamps.