UPDATE – We have changed the language in the petition in order to be more inclusive and with the hope of attracting institutional support. If you signed the original petition please sign the new one. (It’s even better!)
We here at 10,000 Birds have long argued that there should be an alternative to the Duck Stamp that would allow those who want access to National Wildlife Refuges to purchase a stamp for which hunters could not take credit.
Fortunately, the Obama Administration has a petition site that allows you to create a petition and, if 25,000 people sign it, the White House will respond. Let’s see if we can get an official response from the White House about the idea of creating a Wildlife Stamp.
I’m signature #2! Note that you need to have or create an account to sign, but the process is simple. But I expect this makes the petition open to U.S. citizens only.
I’m the fourth person to sign the petition and also Canadian!
We won’t hold it against you, Prairie Birder. 🙂
Saw this on my feed, couldn’t help but stir the pot…..
We already have a non-hunting lands pass, (http://www.nps.gov/findapark/passes.htm).
What makes a duck stamp special is the habitat conservation that it’s enabled! If anything I would like to see a petition that suggested creating a non-hunting habitat conservation stamp, not just for entry, but that created a similar fund for habitat conservation and land acquisition! Of course this MOST important part of the duck stamp program is missing from the petition….
Of course my preferred choice is to get my duck stamp every year, because I’m proud to play a part in a historical and ever important habitat conservation program regardless if I decide to harvest any of the fruits of such a fantastic program….
Never quite understood why birders seem so antagonistic towards harvest in wildlife management. Odds are we wouldn’t even have these resources (for enjoyment, not just hunting), had it not been for sportsmen (non market forced) harvest and regulation….
@Abe: If you clicked through and read the petition you would see that it is meant as a conservation stream from non-consumptive wildlife watchers. The title and text is as follows:
Create a Wildlife Stamp for access to NWRs for non-consumptive purposes – an alternative to the Duck Stamp.
“Currently those who wish to buy unlimited access to our nation’s National Wildlife Refuges have to buy a Duck Stamp, which results in credit and power going to hunters and the money raised from the stamps going to projects for hunters.
A Wildlife Stamp would allow for those who wish to view but not consume wildlife to have their voices heard and their dollars used for conservation of species other than those that are hunted.
We wildlife watchers are a huge community and should have our own stamp!”
As for why birders are a bit antagonistic towards those who harvest, it probably has to do with the resistance of hunters to banning lead bullets and fishing tackle, the refusal of hunters to acknowledge that thousands of duck stamps are bought by people who do not hunt, and the allocation of dollars from the Duck Stamp goes much more towards managing for birds and animals that will be hunted than for those that aren’t.
I did click through, and I’m suggesting you strengthen this text,
“A Wildlife Stamp would allow for those who wish to view but not consume wildlife to have their voices heard and their dollars used for conservation of species other than those that are hunted.”
The duck stamp very explicitly sets aside funds for land acquisition, and not bureaucratic overhead or other types of “conservation”… 98 cents on the dollar in fact! If you want a duckstamp for birders, I’d stress this in the petition, the acquisition or lease of lands important to non-game species…
The reason I buy duck stamps is because it does NOT go into the general “conservation” funds pool as the petition more or less suggests in it’s vague wording.
@Abe: The text can’t be changed once it is created and was limited to a small number of characters so it couldn’t be too detailed. And it is not as if the petition is going to be final, binding, language.
Well since you linked through 10k on facebook, and still have only a few signatures, I’d consider redoing it, but that’s your prerogative. I was just suggesting that you might have a little more luck presenting this as a positive counterpart for protecting the habitats of non game species, recognizing the success of duck stamps, and suggesting extending this effective habitat program to non game species for non game wildlife enthusiasts. As it reads, it’s more a negative pitch of exclusion… I know it’s not binding, but you might do better attracting signatures for what at it’s core is a very good idea! I suppose this is played out at this point. I love the blog, miss my NYC birding days…
I would very much like to see a wildlife stamp introduced, one that would not include hunting or shooting! There are so many of us that enjoy the solitude of our national forests and parks. We want to see the wildlife without any interest in killing anything. CJD
This would be awesome… another stamp to collect!