2021-22 Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Duck Stamp – Self-Adhesive Pane
Perhaps no stamps are as beautiful or as popular as the Hunting Permit Stamps, better known as the “Duck Stamps.” In March 1934, Congress authorized the Postal Department to issue receipts, in the form of attractive stamps, to licensed hunters. The profits from these stamps would then go to maintaining waterfowl life in the United States. J.N. Darling, a well-known cartoonist and artist, designed the first “duck” stamp - a $1.00 issue that pictured two mallards preparing to land. Its beauty and novelty immediately appealed to stamp collectors, and the desire to own one became widespread.
The government was adamant, however. The stamp was for hunters only, not for collectors. It had to be attached to a license, and the hunter had to keep it intact for one year. But the collectors would not give up, and fifteen days before the first stamps expired they were placed on sale for stamp enthusiasts.
Issued annually, the “duck” stamps are designed by some of America's finest artists. Initially, the artwork for these stamps was commissioned, but that changed in 1949 when designer Bob Hines (creator of the 1946-47 issue) suggested the idea for a contest. Today, well-known painters and designers from throughout the U.S. compete to have their work displayed on the desirable hunting permit stamps. In 1991, Nancy Howe became the first woman to win the annual competition.
These handsome stamps have featured a wide array of waterfowl, such as Emperor Geese, Wood Ducks, Canvasback Drakes, and Whistling Swans, to name a few. All issues are inscribed “Migratory Bird Hunting Stamp.” The first five read “Department of Agriculture,” while all following issues read “Department of the Interior.” From 1946 on, all stamps bear an inscription on the back that says: “It is unlawful to hunt waterfowl unless you sign your name in ink on the face of this stamp.”
Today, this revenue program raises approximately $20 million annually, and almost four million acres of wetlands have been purchased with these funds. Not only do these stamps bring beauty to your collection, but their purchase helps protect our nation’s waterfowl.
In 1998, the Department of the Interior issued the first self-adhesive duck stamp. Interestingly, we’ve heard that the new self-adhesive stamps were made dollar-bill size so they could fit securely in the cash drawers of Wal-Mart’s sporting goods departments.
2021 Stamp Pictures Lesser Scaup
The lesser scaup is a small diving duck native to North America. It is also sometimes referred to as the little bluebill because of the color of its bill. There are two theories for how this duck got its name. The first is that it was named after the Scottish word for clams, oysters, and mussels – the lesser scaup's favorite foods. The second is that it was named after the "scaup" call made by females of the species.
Adult lesser scaups are typically between 15 and 18 inches long and weigh a little more than one and a half pounds. Males (drakes) are larger than females (hens). Drakes have black, iridescent heads with a small tuft, a black breast, whitish-gray back and wings, and white underparts. There may be some olive or grayish-brown markings. Hens have a white band at the base of their bill, lighter feathers around their ears, and a dark brown body, which fades to white. Both hens and drakes have blue-gray bills with a small black "nail" at the tip. They also have gray feet and bright yellow-orange eyes.
To feed, lesser scaup dive to the bottom of a body of water and sift through the mud. They mainly eat mussels and clams, but are also known to eat seeds and aquatic plants. Occasionally, they will feed on crustaceans, insects, or small fish. Although lesser scaups are abundant, declining populations mean conservationists are now keeping a closer eye on them.