CONSERVATION -- Bob Hautman, an artist from Delano, Minn., has won the 2017 Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest with an acrylic painting of mallards.
It's Hartman's third win in the competitive annual contest for art that graces the Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp.
What's more remarkable is the artistic domination of Hautman's family. Hautman’s brothers, Jim and Joe, are also multiple Duck Stamp artists, having each won the contest five times.
The announcement was made Monday by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at the annual art contest held at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point at the Noel Fine Arts Center.
Hautman’s mallard painting will be made into the 2018-2019 federal Duck Stamp, which will go on sale in late June 2018.
The sells for $25 and raises nearly $40 million each year to provide funds to conserve and protect wetland habitats in the National Wildlife Refuge System for the benefit of wildlife and the enjoyment of people.
Waterfowl hunters age 16 and older are required to buy the federal stamp in addition to their state hunting licenses. Some non-hunting conservationists also buy the stamps to make a contribution to wetlands protection.
Duck Stamp holders can enter national wildlife refuges without paying an entrance fee.
Duck stamps can be purchased at refuges, U.S. Post Office stations or online.
“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,” U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke said in a prepared release.
Artists have a long tradition of helping raise funds and bring attention to wetlands conservation, Interior officials said, noting that 98 percent of the proceeds from sales of the Federal Duck Stamp go to the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund, The fund supports the protection of migratory bird habitat within the National Wildlife Refuge System.
Of 215 entries in this year’s Duck Stamp competition, 12 entries made it to the final round of judging today. Eligible species for this year’s Federal Duck Stamp Contest were the mallard, gadwall, cinnamon teal, blue-winged teal and harlequin duck.
- See a gallery of the 2017 Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest entries.