Sunday, July 10, 2016

Oklahoma: State Waterfowl Stamp Art Contest Entries Due Aug. 1

The green-winged teal is the selected subject for the
2017-18 Oklahoma Waterfowl Stamp design competition.
(USFWS Photo)
Artists planning to participate in the Oklahoma Waterfowl Stamp design competition are reminded they have until 4:30 p.m. Aug. 1 to submit entries. This prestigious contest has been conducted by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation since 1980.
     The winning artwork will serve as the design for the 2017-18 Oklahoma Waterfowl Stamp, which is purchased by waterfowl hunters in the state and collectors nationwide. The winning artist will receive a $1,200 purchase award courtesy of NatureWorks, aTulsa-based conservation organization.
    The subject for this year's stamp design competition is the green-winged teal. An initial call for entries was issued in May.
    Most waterfowl hunters in Oklahoma are required to possess a current state waterfowl hunting license and/or an Oklahoma Waterfowl Stamp when hunting.
    Because the Wildlife Department receives no general state tax appropriations, revenue from the Oklahoma Waterfowl Stamp is an important source of funding for in-the-field habitat work that benefits waterfowl and other wetlands wildlife.
    "The income from Oklahoma Waterfowl Stamp sales is used to fund habitat acquisition and management to benefit waterfowl and other wetlands wildlife," said Micah Holmes, information supervisor for the Wildlife Department. "The stamp appeals to collectors and hunters, who are doing their part to conserve wildlife and preserve the heritage of waterfowl hunting."
    Since the waterfowl stamp program began, about 12,000 acres of habitat have been purchased and many thousands of acres of additional habitat have been enhanced, restored and maintained for the benefit of waterfowl.
    This year's Oklahoma Waterfowl Stamp features a mallard drake in artwork created by Adam Oswald of Pierre, S.D.
    Licenses (hunting privilege only) for this year's waterfowl hunting seasons are available for purchase now at the Wildlife Department's temporary headquarters, 2145 N.E. 36th St. in Oklahoma City from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays, or anytime online at wildlifedepartment.com. Actual Oklahoma duck stamps for the coming seasons will go on sale the last week of July.
    Complete contest rules and entry forms appear on the Department's website at wildlifedepartment.com/facts_maps/duckstampprogram.htm. For more contest information, call (405) 521-4632.
     While the Wildlife Department no longer produces prints of the winning artwork, a few limited-edition prints from previous years are still available for sale. To order, go online to wildlifedepartment.com.