US Stamps

Joseph Hautman wins 2022 federal duck stamp art contest

Sep 29, 2022, 12 PM
Joseph Hautman’s acrylic painting of three tundra swans in flight was selected as the winner of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s 2022 federal duck stamp art contest held online Sept. 23-24. Image courtesy of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

By Charles Snee

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service announced Sept. 24 that Joseph Hautman of Plymouth, Minn., was selected as the winner of the 2022 federal duck stamp art contest that was held online Sept. 23-24. This was the third year the contest was held virtually because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The announcement was made via livestream at the Fish and Wildlife Service headquarters in Falls Church, Va.

Hautman’s acrylic painting of a trio of tundra swans flying over a wetland will appear on the duck stamp that is scheduled to be issued sometime in late June 2023, the Fish and Wildlife Service said. This is Hautman’s sixth win in the annual contest.

Of 187 entries submitted to this year’s competition, 54 entries (including Hautman’s) made it to the final round of judging. Eligible species for this year’s duck stamp contest were the tundra (whistling) swan, mottled duck, American green-winged teal, American wigeon and Barrow’s goldeneye.

Frank Mittelstadt of Beaver Dam, Wis., placed second with his acrylic painting of tundra swans, and Robert Hautman of Delano, Minn., took third place with his acrylic painting of an American wigeon.

The Hautman brothers — James, Joseph and Robert — have collectively won the duck stamp art contest a record 15 times. James notched the most recent win; his painting of a pair of redheads floating on water appears on the 2022 $25 duck stamp (Scott RW89). Robert’s painting of a pair of mallards in flight appears on the 2018 $25 duck stamp (Scott RW85). The 2017 $25 duck stamp features James’ painting of Canada geese (RW84).

Joseph last came out on top in the 2015 contest, when his painting of two trumpeter swans was selected to appear on the 2016 $25 duck stamp (Scott RW83).

Serving as judges for the 2022 contest were artist Sean Murtha, philatelist Richard Houk, conservation partners Marshall Johnson and Paul Schmidt, and waterfowl biologist and conservation partner Christopher Nicolai.

Though not valid for postage, duck stamps are popularly collected and listed in the Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers under the heading Hunting Permit Stamps.

Since it was established in 1934, sales of the federal duck stamp to hunters, bird watchers, outdoor enthusiasts and collectors have raised more than $1 billion to conserve over 6 million acres of habitat for birds and other wildlife and provide countless opportunities for hunting and other wildlife-oriented recreation on public lands in the United States.

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