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Clay Hammons
Clay Hammons
Photo by Martha Cooper
Mississippi Museum of Natural Science

Natchez Student Wins Mississippi’s Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest


April 11, 2002

Jim Rothschild, 404/679-7291

A 17-year-old student, Clay Hammons, of Natchez has won Best of Show in Mississippi’s 2002 Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest. A total of 119 entries were received from kindergarten through twelfth grade students from schools throughout the State of Mississippi. The contest was judged at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science in Jackson on March 25.

Hammons, a Junior at Cathedral High School in Natchez, used colored pencils to create “Peaceful Pintail.” A copy of his original artwork is on display at the Museum, 2148 Riverside Drive in Jackson, until April 26.

“This award means a lot to me,” said Hammons. “My art teacher, Andree Gamberi, encouraged me to enter the contest, and now I’m encouraged to do more art work in the future.”

The Junior Duck Stamp Contest is sponsored annually by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Hammons’ winning entry qualifies him to compete in the National Junior Duck Stamp contest to be judged on April 26, in Washington, D.C. The image of the national winning entry becomes the Federal Junior Duck Stamp, which is sold by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to stamp collectors and conservationists. The Junior Duck Stamp competition was authorized by the U.S. Congress in 1994 and is modeled after the Federal Duck Stamp, which has been sold since 1934 to raise money to protect wetlands and waterfowl habitat. The purpose of the Junior Duck Stamp Contest is to promote conservation of wetlands and waterfowl habitat through arts education.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the 95-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System that encompasses more than 540 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 70 national fish hatcheries, 64 fishery resource offices, and 78 ecological services field stations. The agency enforces federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores national significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Aid program that distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.

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2001 News Releases

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