How You Can Help Migratory Birds

Help for Migratory Birds: The Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation [Duck] Stamp

by Paul Baicich

In addition to waterfowl (ducks, geese, and swans), many other birds have benefited directly from stamp revenues. Among them are waterbirds (like western grebe, least bittern, yellow rail, and black tern), shorebirds (black-necked stilt, American avocet, whimbrel, red knot, and Wilson’s phalarope), raptors (swallow-tailed kite, Swainson’s hawk, and golden eagle), and wetland-associated songbirds (vermilion flycatcher, sedge wren, prothonotary warbler, LeConte’s sparrow, and tricolored blackbird).

In fact, the birds you may see coming through your yard or your local park in spring or fall may have depended on a stamp-supported national wildlife refuge for nesting or stopover protection.

Moreover, many spectacular refuges for bird watching have been bought using mostly stamp dollars. Such fine birding refuges as Santa Ana (Texas) Horicon (Wisconsin), Bombay Hook (Delaware), Bosque del Apache (New Mexico), and Parker River (Massachusetts) owe most of their existence to the stamp.

WHAT PERCENTAGE?

The figures below reflect the acquisition-percentages from the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund (MBCF) where Duck Stamp dollars are the major, but not the only, contributor. (A large portion also comes from excise/import fees and other some sources.) These 25 sample national wildlife refuges are also Important Bird Areas (IBAs) and excellent bird-watching areas:

National Wildlife Refuge
MBFC Stamp Acquisition %
Sacramento in California
99.6%
Bosque del Apache in New Mexico
99.4%
Parker River in Massachusetts
99.2%
Pea Island in North Carolina
99.2%
Quivira in Kansas
99.0%
Muskatatuk in Indiana
98.8%
Horicon in Wisconsin
98.7%
Monomoy in Massachusetts
97.8%
Bombay Hook in Delaware
95.1%
Santa Ana in Texas
94.9%
DeSoto in Iowa and Nebraska
90.8%
Laguna Atascosa in Texas
89.1%
Ottawa in Ohio
89.0%
Okefenokee in Georgia
88.2%
Anahuac in Texas
87.5%
Edwin B. Forsythe (Brigantine) in New Jersey
85.0%
Blackwater in Maryland
75.8%
Chassahowitzka in Florida
73.1%
Chincoteague in Virginia
69.9%
Seney in Michigan
46.4%
Aransas in Texas
43.0%
Cape May in New Jersey
40.3%
J. Clark Salyer in North Dakota
36.5%
Bear River in Utah
35.0%
Malheur in Oregon
25.6%

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