Monday, November 30, 2009

Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamps ("Duck Stamps")

As conservationists we hear the word hunters and our first thought is a negative one. Kill the animals we are trying to save? Isn't that defeating the purpose? I know that I personally abhor hunting and could never do it myself. But...I recognize that responsible hunters are perhaps some of the greatest contributors to conservation out there, via this program. Check this out:

Ninety-eight percent of the proceeds from the $15 Duck Stamp go to the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund, which supports the purchase of acres of wetlands for inclusion into the National Wildlife Refuge System. Another interesting and important fact:

Since 1934, the Federal Duck Stamp program has raised more than $750 million to purchase nearly six million acres of wildlife habitat for the Refuge System.

Duck Stamp funds have been used to acquire habitat at hundreds of refuges, in nearly every state in our nation. There are 550 national wildlife refuges spread across all 50 states and U.S. territories. A current Duck Stamp can be used for free admission to any national wildlife refuge open to the public. To show you how important our refuges are: In 2008, more than 41 million visited a unit of the refuge system. Refuges offer recreational opportunities, including hunting, fishing, bird watching and photography, all the wild protecting wildlife and its habitat.

I have visited wildlife refuges across the country and they are some of my very favorite places to hike and bird at.

All waterfowl hunters age 16 and older are required to purchase and carry the current Migratory Bird Conservation and Hunting Stamp – commonly known as the Duck Stamp – but conservationists, stamp collectors and others also purchase the stamp in support of habitat conservation.

Please consider purchasing a Duck Stamp today. You can be sure that this is one way that your dollars are guaranteed to go towards the preservation of habitat and wildlife!!!!!!


  1. Thanks for the reminder to go out and get my Duck Stamps! I've been getting these for many years, one for myself and then several as holiday/host/ess gifts. But this year someone (who knows his birds, believe me) told me that these wetland preserves are managed solely with fall and winter waterfowl (hunting season) in mind and that, for mosquito abatement reasons(I don't want west nile virus either!), the wetlands are dried out in the summer. I would appreciate clarification on this, as spring and summer feathered wetlands definitely deserve and need equal protection.

  2. In my haste I left out a word: I meant to say "feathered wetlands occupants". Thanks.

  3. Many refuges are intensely managed, and some are left in more of a natural state. To say that they are managed strictly for hunting purposes is an overstatement. They are managed for invasive species control, breeding birds and mammals, etc. Waterfowl migration stopover points is a very important component of the refuge system. It is highly unlikely that a refuge would drain its wetlands strictly for mosquito control, at the expense of breeding wildlife. A good place to read up on NWRs is and also the National Wildlife Refuge Association (