The 2021 Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp and Print will feature a pair of common goldeneyes painted by Ric Sluiter of Pigeon Lake, Ontario. A panel of expert judges selected Sluiter’s painting, titled “On Golden Pond – Common Goldeneye,” from dozens of entries.
All waterfowlers in Canada are required to purchase the stamp to validate their migratory bird hunting permits. Since the program’s inception in 1985, stamp and print sales have generated more than $55 million. The funds are administered by Wildlife Habitat Canada and have been invested to support nearly 2,000 conservation projects across Canada including Delta Waterfowl’s duck production and HunteR3 initiatives.
The price of the annual “Canadian duck stamp” has been $8.50 since 1991, but Delta Waterfowl senior director of Canadian conservation and hunting policy, Jim Fisher, says a price increase needs to be considered.
“The benefits of the stamp to Canada’s waterfowl and waterfowl hunters is undeniable, and Delta is deeply grateful for the support WHC has provided to our programs over the years,” said Fisher. “However, with inflation alone, what cost $1.00 in 1991 costs $1.69 today! Topped with today’s increased needs for waterfowl conservation and hunter recruitment, and you can see why a price increase on this critical funding source should be explored.”
Sales of Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation stamps took a hit in 2020, as well, because U.S. waterfowl hunters were not permitted to enter Canada due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. To aid in recovery of the lost conservation funding, Delta Waterfowl encourages U.S. hunters to purchase the 2021 Canadian Duck Stamp whether they will hunt Canada or not this year. For information on the availability of stamps, prints and other related products, visit: whc.org.
The 2021 winning painter of “On Golden Pond – Common Goldeneyes”, Ric Sluiter is a Canadian artist who was born in Toronto and grew up in Mississauga on the shores of Lake Ontario. He studied animation at Sheridan College, going on to work at Atkinson Film Arts in Ottawa and later at Animation House in Toronto. In 1989, he moved to Florida to work at Disney Feature Animation where he worked on such films as “Beauty and the Beast,” “Aladdin,” “Little Mermaid” and “Bolt.” Sluiter was an art director on “Mulan,” “Lilo and Stitch” and a “Roger Rabbit” short. After working in animation for more than 35 years, he returned to his true passion: fulltime wildlife painting. —Bill Miller