Since 1934, federal duck stamp sales have raised more than $750 million, and this funding has been used to purchase or lease over 5.3 million acres of waterfowl habitat. Ninety-eight cents out of every dollar generated by duck stamp sales goes directly to the purchase or lease of wetland habitat in the National Wildlife Refuge system, and the federal duck stamp program has been called one of the most successful conservation programs ever initiated.
Not convinced? Waterfowl are not the only species that benefit from wetland habitat preservation. Thousands upon thousands of shorebirds, riparian songbirds, and Sandhill Cranes thrive at California’s wildlife refuges, and many mammals, fish, reptiles, and amphibians rely on these landscapes as well. An estimated one-third of the nation’s endangered and threatened species take advantage of these habitats.
The federal duck stamp serves as an entrance pass for national wildlife refuges where admission is normally charged, and duck stamps are also popular collector items.
The number of hunters is declining, but the need to protect our wetlands is not. Purchasing a duck stamp each year is one of the best investments you can make to ensure that these valuable habitats continue to thrive.
The 2010 federal duck stamp features an American Wigeon, and California’s 2010 stamp features a pair of Redhead Ducks. You can purchase federal stamps at many post offices, online (www.duckstamp.com), and at many sporting/outdoor stores, and the California stamp at hunter check stations or from Department of Fish & Game offices or online (www.dfg.ca.gov).