Download the Rules and Entry Form

Purpose of rules—These rules set forth, and will govern, the annual Alabama Migratory Waterfowl Stamp contest through which a design is chosen for the Migratory Waterfowl Stamp.

Contest deadlines—The contest to select the design for the annual Alabama Migratory Waterfowl Stamp will officially open on January 1 of each year. All persons intending to submit an entry in the contest shall notify the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and request a copy of the contest rules and Reproduction Rights Agreement. Requests for the contest rules and Reproduction Rights Agreement should be sent to the Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, 64 North Union Street, Montgomery, Alabama 36130.  Entries may be received any time after December 11, but must be received or postmarked no later than midnight of February 9.

Contest eligibility—Alabama residents only shall be eligible to participate in the contest.  However, any person who has won the contest during the preceding three years shall be ineligible to submit an entry in the current year’s contest. Employees of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, members of the contest judging panel and their relatives are ineligible to submit an entry.

Criteria for judging—Entries will be judged based on the following five categories:

                1.             Suitability for Reproduction

                2.             Originality

                3.             Artistic Composition

                4.             Anatomical Accuracy

                5.             General Rendering

Technical requirements for design or entry—The design must be a horizontal drawing or painting not to  exceed 9 x 12 inches. No scrollwork, lettering, or signature can appear on the design itself.  Each entry may be drawn in any medium desired by the contestant.  Contestants may not submit more than one entry per contest.

Restrictions on subject matter of entry—A living species of North American migratory ducks or geese must be the dominant feature of any design.  No such species shall be portrayed which has been selected for the Migratory Waterfowl Stamp during the preceding three years (American Wigeon, Canada Goose and Green-winged Teal). The design must be the contestant’s own original creation and may not be copied or duplicated from previously published art, including photographs. An entry submitted in a prior Alabama contest which was not selected for the stamp design may not be resubmitted in the present contest.

Suitability of entry for printing—All entries should be rendered with fullest possible attention to tone and detail. These are important prerequisites in printing, as they determine texture and directions of lining.  The wing and feather construction must be particularly well defined, as a printer is reliant on the art of the naturalist for detail.

Submission procedures for entry—The lower, detachable portion of the contestant’s Reproduction Rights Agreement must be attached to the back of the entry. The name of the species depicted shall also be printed on the back of the entry. Each entry shall be mounted with a three inch mat  (total size including mat will not exceed 15 x 18 inches). Each entry shall be protected by a covering of acetate or cellophane (suggestion:  heavy acetate attached only at the top of the mat will allow judges the opportunity to view the painting without a reflective cover over it).  Entries will not be accepted that are in wooden frames or under glass. Each entry shall be protectively wrapped and mailed first class registered mail, or shipped United Parcel to:  Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, 64 North Union Street, Suite 584, Montgomery, AL 36130 or 36104 for UPS delivery. Entries will be promptly processed when received. Each contestant must also sign and submit the top portion of the Reproduction Rights Agreement.

Property insurance for entries—All contestants are hereby notified of the advisability of obtaining adequate property insurance coverage for their respective entry. The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources will not so insure the entries it receives. The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is not responsible for damage in the mails or loss by fire or theft.

Failure to comply with contest rules—Any entry which fails to comply with any of the requirements of these rules shall be disqualified from the contest and will not be considered by the judging panel.

Selection and qualification of contest judges—Three judges will be selected annually by the Commissioner.  The judges will be recognized experts in the fields of ornithology, conservation, and/or art.  The judges selected will serve without compensation.  The identification of the members of the judging panel will be announced on the date that the judging takes place.

Date and location of contest—The selection of the winning entry will take place as soon as possible after the closing date of the contest but in no event will it be later than March 15 of each year. The exact date, time, and location of the contest will be announced at a reasonable period of time prior to March 15.

Display of entries for contest selection--All qualifying entries will be displayed chronologically based on the date of receipt of the entry.  The only visible identification mark on each entry will be the designation assigned to the entry by the contest coordinator.

Scoring criteria for contest—Entries will be judged on the previously set forth criteria and will receive a score of between one and ten.

Scoring procedures for contest—Prior to the judging of the entries, the entire panel of judges will be briefed by the contest coordinator on the requisite characteristics which make a design suitable for printing.  The entire display of qualifying entries will be closely scrutinized by the panel of judges.  Each judge will then be allowed to nominate 10 entries for preliminary consideration by the entire panel of judges.  When the judges have completed this nomination process, the entries so nominated for consideration will be voted on by written ballot by the panel of judges.  The entry receiving the highest score will win.

The contest coordinator will tabulate the final votes and announce the winning entry which received the highest total of points and the second and third runner-ups.  In case of a tie vote for first place in the final round of consideration, the entire panel of judges will vote again on the deadlocked entries, with each judge voting for only that entry believed to be most qualified to win.  If, after three rounds of judging, any two or more entries receive identical scores, selecting the winning artwork will reside with the Commissioner of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.  The selection of the winning entry by the judges will be final.  NOTE:  ANY ARTIST, OR THIRD PARTY, WHO ATTEMPTS TO INFLUENCE THE SELECTION OF THE JUDGES WILL BE PERMANENTLY DISQUALIFIED FROM PRESENT AND FUTURE ALABAMA WATERFOWL STAMP CONTESTS.

A high-resolution image of the winning artwork must be supplied by the artist.

Public attendance at contest—All phases of the nomination and voting process will be open for viewing by the general public.

Return of entries after contest—All entries will be returned by United Parcel Service to the participating artists within 60 days of completion of the contest.  NOTE:  UPS WILL NOT DELIVER TO A POST OFFICE BOX.  Artists should provide street address, or directions for United Parcel Service.

The following species will not qualify for the 2018 Alabama Migratory Waterfowl Stamp contest because they have been used within the past three years.

  • American Wigeon      2016-2017
  • Canada Goose          2017-2018
  • Green-winged Teal    2018-2019

View previous winners