Friday, Sept. 29, 2017
By Mark Carter
The 2018 duck stamp will feature an acrylic painting of descending mallards.
The artist whose work was chosen to adorn the 2018-19 Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp (otherwise known as the duck stamp) is Bob Hautman of Delano, Minn. This year's stamp marks his third duck-stamp win; his work previously was chosen as the duck stamp in 1997 and 2001.
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is responsible for the duck stamp, which sells for $25 and contributes roughly $40 million each year for conservation and protection of wetland habitat at national wildlife refuges. Ninety-eight percent of duck stamp revenue supports the protection of migratory bird habitat within the National Wildlife Refuge system, according to FWS.
The 2018-19 stamp goes on sale next June.
All waterfowl hunters ages 16 and older are required to purchase and carry a current federal duck stamp, and many non-hunters including bird watchers, conservationists and stamp collectors annually purchase the duck stamp as well. Current duck stamps can be used for free admission to any national wildlife refuge that charges a fee.
The winning painting in the 2017 federal duck stamp contest from Minnesota artist Bob Hautman. (DOI)
“Our nation’s waterfowl hunters and other sportsmen and women have a long tradition of leading the way in conserving wildlife and habitat,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke in a statement. “There is no better example of this than the duck stamp, one of the most successful conservation programs in U.S. history, through which hunters have contributed hundreds of millions of dollars since its inception eight decades ago.”
Hautman beat out 214 other entries in this year's duck stamp contest and was one of 12 finalists. His brothers, Jim and Joe, are multiple duck-stamp winning artists as well, each having won five times.
Eligible species for this year’s duck stamp contest were the mallard, gadwall, cinnamon teal, blue-winged teal and harlequin duck.
Hautman chose to highlight the mallard while second-place finisher Greg Alexander of Ashland, Wisc., entered an acrylic painting of a cinnamon teal, and Christine Clayton of Sidney, Ohio, placed third with her oil painting of a blue-winged teal, according to FWS.