Duck Stamps? Duck Stamps you say? What in the world do Duck Stamps have to do with reptiles and amphibians? Well, think carefully…What is probably the most important resource that herpetofauna (or any wildlife species for that matter) require for survival? The answer is habitat. Yes, they need habitat to perpetuate their species. And…what is one type of habitat that some of our herpetofauna use? The answer is wetlands.
The Federal Duck Stamp Program oversees sales of Duck Stamps. Currently, these items are $15 each and $0.98 out of every dollar generated by the sales goes directly to purchasing (or leasing) of wetlands in the National Wildlife Refuge System! While ducks and other wildlife benefit, so do herpetofauna.
Interestingly, Duck Stamps are usually purchased by hunters as a Duck Stamp (in addition to a hunting license) is required to hunt migratory waterfowl. Anyone though can purchase them. How? Simple. They are available at most Post Offices and many sporting goods/outdoor-activity oriented stores. You can also purchase them online. Go to https://www.fws.gov/birds/get-involved/duck-stamp.php
This program has been in existence since 1934 and has been touted as one of the most successful conservation programs ever. The program is celebrating its 75th Anniversary.
Did you know that all 2,774 acres of the Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge (in Idaho) were purchased with Duck Stamp Funds? Did you know there are 7 species of amphibians and 6 species of reptiles occurring at Kootenai?
Did you know that seven National Wildlife Refuges (NWR) in Virginia were funded in part by Federal Duck Stamps? These include the Eastern Shore NWR, Back Bay NWR, Chincoteague NWR, Fisherman Island NWR, Great Dismal Swamp NWR, MacKay NWR and Rappahannock River Valley NWR?
Want to know more? Go to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s website: https://www.fws.gov/birds/get-involved/duck-stamp.php
It’s no rubber stamp. It’s conservation action!