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Junior Duck Stamp Challenge 2023

A Scientific and Artistic Opportunity for K-12 Students

The Federal Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Program is a dynamic, multidisciplinary curriculum that teaches wetland and waterfowl conservation to students in kindergarten through high school. The program encourages students to explore their natural world, invites them to investigate biology and wildlife management principles and challenges them to express and share what they have learned with others.  This program and curriculum lend themselves to learning in a variety of forms, remote, hybrid teaching and in-classroom instruction.

Announcing the winners of the 2022-23 Maine Junior Duck Stamp Challenge

Galleries of the 2022-2023 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners 

(pictured above: Canada Goose by Best in Show 2022-23 winner Margaret Lynch, 14)

The winning artwork from a national art contest serves as the design for the Junior Duck Stamp, which the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service produces annually. This $5 stamp has become a much sought after collector’s item. One hundred percent of the revenue from the sale of Junior Duck stamps goes to support recognition and environmental education activities for students who participate in the program.

This program has a free downloadable curricular guide to help support learning about waterfowl habitat and conservation. The guides provide fun, age-level appropriate activities that will enhance your curriculum and students’ knowledge of wildlife and habitat.

Maine Program and Submission Info

Students were able to submit an entry of approved waterfowl art into the competition. Designs are judged in four grade categories–K-3rd grades, 4th-6th grades, 7th-9th grades, 10th-12th grades–with awards for first, second, and third places and honorable mentions. All students are also encouraged to write a Conservation Message that captures the essence of what they have learned about conservation.  One message per state is judged at the national level.

The Maine Best of Show entry will compete with contest winners from other states in a national competition. The first place national winning design is used to create the Federal Junior Duck Stamp. Proceeds from the sale of Junior Duck Stamps (which cost $5 each) support conservation education by providing awards and scholarships for students, teachers, and schools.

The submission deadline is March 1, 2023.

You can download the teacher guides here and view the contest rules and entry forms here.  For questions and/or curricular support, please contact Maine Audubon’s Lead Educator, Linda Woodard at Judging will take place on March 16, 2023, and winners will be announced in late March.

Please Send Submissions To:

Tom Wall, Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, 321 Port Rd, Wells, Maine 04090


List of Eligible Species
Videos of Waterfowl
Ducks at a Distance Identification Guide

Virtual tools

Kirstin Underwood, former Fish and Wildlife Biologist with the US Fish and Wildlife Service, provides background information on water fowl and their conservation message. View her Waterfowl & Wetlands presentation.

Michael Boardman: Wildlife artist and visiting school artist Michael Boardman talks about how to draw ducks, what to look for when choosing a subject, and more. Watch the video here >

Rebekah Lowell: Wildlife artist Rebekah Lowell describes how she creates and design duck stamps, provides tips, and answers questions. Watch the video here >

Recent news about the Junior Duck Stamp