Virginia's Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (VDGIF) will begin selling its 2011 Virginia State Migratory Waterfowl Conservation Stamp on July 1, 2011.
The artwork for the stamp, painted by Ron Louque, depicts a pair of redhead ducks. This is not the first time Mr. Louque's artwork appeared as a winner in Virginia, his painting of flying mallards was depicted on the first voluntary Virginia duck stamp back in 1988.
Last year, 22,682 duck stamps were sold bringing in $225,820. The Department awarded four Virginia Migratory Waterfowl Grants in 2010 for projects to be started in the upcoming year totaling $128,845.
Grantees included Ducks Unlimited, The Fish America Foundation, The Elizabeth River Project and the Nature Conservancy. These projects will restore over 240 acres of wetland habitat from the Eastern Shore to Wakefield.
In addition this past year the Department used duck stamp funds to purchase the Mattaponi WMA in Caroline county which contains over 800 acres of wetland habitat.
The funds generated from sales of the Virginia Migratory Waterfowl Conservation Stamp are placed in the Department's Game Protection Fund and are accounted for under a separate fund designated as the Virginia Migratory Waterfowl Conservation Stamp Fund.
These funds are used to contract with appropriate nonprofit organizations for cooperative waterfowl habitat improvement projects; to protect, preserve, restore, enhance and develop waterfowl habitat in Virginia through the department's waterfowl program; and to offset the administrative costs associated with production, issuance of, and accounting for the Stamp.
For more information on waterfowl hunting in Virginia, visit www.dgif.virginia.gov