Duck-stamp contest returns to Washington

Published 7:25 pm Sunday, January 16, 2011

Contributing Editor

The annual N.C. Waterfowl Conservation Stamp competition returns to Washington on Jan. 31.
The East Carolina Wildfowl Guild and the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission will conduct the competition to choose the state’s next “duck stamp” at the Washington Civic Center, with judging beginning at 10 a.m. Entries must be received by 5 p.m. Jan. 28 at the guild’s office at 412 River Road, Washington.
The competition is a prelude to the 16th-annual East Carolina Wildlife Arts Festival and North Carolina Decoy Carving Championships set for Feb. 11-13 in Washington. The artist whose entry takes first place in the contest will receive $7,000 in prize money and a $300 travel allowance.
This year will be the fourth straight year a nationwide, public art competition was conducted to select the winning artwork used to produce the North Carolina duck stamp. In previous years, the N.C. Wildlife Resource Commission picked artists to produce artwork for duck stamps.
Selected entries from this year’s competition will be displayed at the preview reception for the festival. At that reception, to be held Feb. 11, the top five entries will be unveiled by the Wildlife Resources Commission. The top entries will remain on display throughout the festival weekend.
Scot Storm, a resident of Freeport, Minn., won the 2010 duck stamp competition. Storm’s painting of snow geese was judged the best out of 32 entries from artists in 19 states. It scored 41 points out of a possible 50 points. Storm was the winner of the 2008 competition.
In 2004, Storm won the federal duck-stamp competition. He’s won or placed in numerous similar competitions.
Does he plan to defend his North Carolina title?
“I plan on entering — you bet,” Storm said.
Asked if he would attend the unveiling of the top entries — if he wins this year’s competition — during the festival, Storm said, “I sure would like to. I liked it when I visited there the first time I won. … It would let me see a lot of people I know.”
Storm said his entry for this year’s contest depicts redheads.
Each year, the WRC specified five species/habitats for the competition. For this year, the five eligible species/habitats are tundra swan, Canada geese, brant, gadwall and redhead. The entries must show an eligible species in an appropriate habitat in North Carolina.
In the summer of 2006, the guild approached and persuaded the WRC to let the guild sponsor a national competition as the way to choose the artwork that will be used to produce the state’s annual waterfowl stamp, according to David Gossett, a guild member and chairman of its annual wildlife festival.
Revenue from sales of the print and stamps go to the commission’s Waterfowl Fund, which provides money for the conservation of waterfowl habitat in North Carolina. The fund has raised more than $4.2 million since its inception.
“The money is used to help North Carolina meet its financial obligations in implementing the North American Waterfowl Management Plan, the international agreement helping restore waterfowl populations throughout the continent. In addition, funds have been used to support waterfowl research and to buy equipment used to manage wetlands,” according to the commission’s Web site.
For more information about the competition, visit the guild’s website at or call 252-946-2897 or 252-946-9326.