A painting of a pair of black-bellied whistling ducks by Alabama artist Eddie LeRoy was the winner of the 2020-2021 Federal Duck Stamp contest.

Margaret Everson, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service principal deputy director, announced the winner Saturday, Sept. 28, at Patuxent Research Refuge in Laurel, Md.

LeRoy’s acrylic painting will be made into the 2020-2021 Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp, or “Duck Stamp,” which will go on sale in late June 2020.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service produces the Federal Duck Stamp, which sells for $25 and raises approximately $40 million in sales each year. These funds support critical conservation to protect wetland habitats in the National Wildlife Refuge System for the benefit of wildlife and the enjoyment of people.

“These artists are extremely talented, and the quality of the art is matched by the incredible conservation work funded by Duck Stamp sales,” U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt said in a statement. “By purchasing a Duck Stamp, waterfowl hunters have helped raise millions of dollars to conserve wildlife and healthy wetland habitats within the National Wildlife Refuge System.”

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Eighty-five years after it was established, sales of the Duck Stamp to hunters, bird watchers, outdoor enthusiasts and collectors have raised more than $1 billion to conserve more than 6 million acres of habitat for birds and other wildlife and provide countless opportunities for hunting and recreation on our public lands.

Of 190 entries in this year’s competition, 13 entries made it to the final round of judging. Eligible species for this year’s Federal Duck Stamp Contest were the black-bellied whistling-duck, emperor goose, American black duck, bufflehead and northern shoveler.

This is LeRoy’s first Federal Duck Stamp Contest win. He lives in Eufala, Ala.