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2002 Connecticut duck stamp to be last “Collector Edition”

Connecticut has announced that the 2002 duck stamp will be the last “Collector Edition” issued. In coming years, waterfowl hunters will still be legally required to purchase a stamp, but it will be a simple stamp (similar to the state’s pheasant stamp).

Since its inception in 1993, Connecticut duck stamp sales have raised over $1 million specifically for wetland conservation. Each year project proposals are submitted, those deemed most beneficial are funded.

Duck stamp revenues have been an important source of funds used for wetland restoration. In the early years of the Connecticut program, many people were interested in duck stamp artwork and purchased prints and collector stamps. Sales of duck stamp related artwork generated substantial funds. However, as expected, sales declined over time. In recent years, very few prints and collector stamps have been sold. In fact, the cost of producing the artistic stamp and print now exceeds the funds raised from their sale. As a result, 2002 will be the last year that Connecticut will publish duck stamp prints and artistic stamps.

It is unfortunate to lose Connecticut as an artistic stamp producing state. They have always offered a beautiful stamp, with artwork done by some of the nation’s best known wildlife artists, and have also produced a very popular lighthouse series.

Many publishers and collectors nationwide would agree that print sales are down, but that hardly seems a good reason to downgrade the entire program. Would stamps alone make enough money for the state? There would surely be less printing costs involved if only the stamps were produced. Connecticut could follow the example of Tennessee and use the winning artwork from their Federal Junior Duck Stamp contest on the state stamp, thereby removing any compensation given to the commissioned artist.

If you have any comments or suggestions for the state, we urge you to write Connecticut Bureau of Natural Resources, Wildlife Division, Connecticut Dept. of Environmental Protection, 79 Elm St., Hartford, CT 06106-5127, Attention Dale May. Telephone 860-424-3011.

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