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ARCHIVED Weekly News Published August 2, 2016

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Join us! DNR Park a great place for fun and education at this year's State Fair

Contact(s): Kirsten Held, 608-333-7355,

MADISON - Join the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources at the 2016 Wisconsin State Fair! The department will be offering activities and exhibits around the theme of "Join Us" in caring for Wisconsin's valuable natural resources.

You can find the DNR Park in the southwest corner of the fairgrounds - next to the expo building and the cream puff building. The park is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily with a wealth of fun and educational opportunities for the young, and the young at heart.

Learning opportunities also abound throughout the DNR Park. The wildlife exhibit in the north building of the park focuses on the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Migratory Bird Treaty, North America's first attempt at stemming the tide of bird extinction. In the south building, the forestry exhibit showcases the importance of forest products to our daily lives and to the economic well-being of our state. Come see a sampling of the 5,000+ items made from trees.

If you need hunting or fishing licenses, or an admission sticker for state parks and forests, the customer service staff can take care of you just inside the entrance to the DNR Park. At other exhibits, adults may pick up an Endangered Resources tote bag, a 2016-2017 Wisconsin's Great Lakes calendar, or enter to win a Midland All-Hazards Weather Radio (donated by the Wisconsin Division of Emergency Management).

In addition to the daily activities, other special events at the DNR Park during the fair include:

So if you want to feed your mind and spirit at the DNR Park before you head next door for a cream puff, or if you're just in need of a shady place to sit and rest, we have you covered. Join us!



A new pilot project to "capture" wildlife one of many stories highlighted in Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine's August issue

Contact(s): Andrew Savagian, DNR Communications, 608-261-6422;

MADISON - A pilot project to capture wildlife through the power of photography leads the list of stories in this month's Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine.

Snapshot Wisconsin is a volunteer effort involving a network of trail cameras that eventually will be set up around the state to track wildlife in forest, fields and streams of our state.

Anyone can be involved - you don't need a wildlife degree, just a little training, a computer with internet access and a willingness to spend time tracking some of your favorite animals!

In "Hunting without harvest" we stay true to the theme of using a camera, pen, notebook or just your memory to capture the unique looks, sounds and feel of our incredible Wisconsin wildlife. You can even learn more through a Hunting Without Harvest Workshop being held at Treehaven Field Station this September.

In the June issue of the magazine we celebrated the National Park Service's 100th birthday. This month we celebrate three state parks turning 50 years old. Hartman Creek, Lake Kegonsa and Mirror Lake state parks were all created in 1966. Read about all the fun activities planned in all three parks as they celebrate the half-century mark.

Though we've moved into the "Dog Days" of summer, August is still a great time to get involved in native plantings, and we highlight some of the excellent benefits of native gardens -helping keep runoff at bay, attracting more butterflies and adding to the beauty of your backyard landscape - as well as some great tips to get you started.

From natives to non-natives, you can read about some of the interesting science behind nature's invasive "super weed" - Eurasian watermilfoil. In an effort to better understand the impacts of EWM in Wisconsin, DNR staff compiled a decade's worth of data collected on hundreds of waterbodies across the state.

No matter what plants lurk about in our marshes, "Getting to know the gray ghosts" is a sharp essay on the northern harrier, or better known by many as the marsh hawk. If you should see a large bird with a white patch on the base of its tale, skimming low over fields or marshy areas, chances are you're watching one of these magnificent birds.

With September just around the corner, kids and parents can read about efforts to "think outside the bin" as schools around the state are closing the composting loop by taking their food wastes out of the landfill cycle and starting their own composting programs. You can also learn about one student's efforts to kickstart plastics recycling in her Oshkosh community.

Finally, in a tip of the hiking cap to a Wisconsin legend, we look to the past as part of a DNR effort to restore the boyhood haunts of John Muir. Muir grew up exploring the Wisconsin wilderness, and through the magazine you can read about how we're working hard to reclaim some rare landscapes in Marquette County.



Wild Turkey, Pheasant and Waterfowl Stamp design contest winners announced

Contact(s): Krista Pham, DNR assistant upland wildlife ecologist, 608-261-8458,

MADISON - Talented wildlife artists submitted a total of 29 pieces of artwork for the 2017 Wisconsin wild turkey, pheasant, and waterfowl stamp design contest, and the top three submissions in each division will be on display in the Natural Resources Park at the 2016 Wisconsin State Fair.

Caleb Metrich, Craig Fairbert, and Sara Stack were awarded first place in the 2017 contests, with each artist choosing to portray a glimpse into Wisconsin's wealth of outdoor resources. Metrich and Fairbert are veterans of Wisconsin's wildlife stamp design contests, while Stack earned a victory in her first year as a competitor.

Judging concluded July 28, with 16 artists submitting one or more entries. The judging panel included Bruce Urben, Board of Directors President for the Wisconsin Waterfowl Association, Doug Fendry, Pheasants Forever Regional Wildlife Biologist, and Tim Eisele, freelance outdoor writer and photographer.

State Fair attendees interested in wildlife conservation and art are encouraged to visit Natural Resources Park to check out the winning designs and learn more about the many accomplishments of Wisconsin's wildlife stamp programs.

2017 Wild Turkey Stamp design contest

Caleb Metrich of Lake Tomahawk, a self-taught artist who grew up in a home that placed great value on spending time in the outdoors, submitted the winning design for the 2017 Wild Turkey Stamp design contest. Metrich likes to paint what he observes in nature, and the farmland scene depicted in his Wild Turkey Stamp submission features a property where he pursues turkeys in southern Wisconsin. Metrich says he is particularly grateful to his father, a retired taxidermist with years of wildlife knowledge, who provided helpful critiques and mounted wildlife specimens to observe.

This painting showing turkeys in a Wisconsin farmland setting, submitted by Caleb Metrich of Lake Tomahawk, took first prize in the 2017 Wild Turkey Stamp design contest.
This painting showing turkeys in a Wisconsin farmland setting, submitted by Caleb Metrich of Lake Tomahawk, took first prize in the 2017 Wild Turkey Stamp design contest.

John H. Nemec, Jr. of Peshtigo was awarded second place, while third place went to Craig Fairbert of Tony.

All turkey hunters are required to purchase the $5.25 Wild Turkey Stamp to legally hunt turkeys in Wisconsin. Proceeds from stamp sales provide vital support for turkey management and hunting in Wisconsin, and bring in over three-quarters of a million dollars annually for habitat management and restoration projects, education, research, equipment purchases and management of the wild turkey program.

2017 Pheasant Stamp design contest

Craig Fairbert, an avid hunter and fisherman from Tony, submitted the winning design for the 2017 Pheasant Stamp design contest. Fairbert credits his victory to over four decades of painting and drawing experience, and lists Luke Frazier and Kyle Sims as his artistic inspirations.

First place in the 2017 Pheasant Stamp design contest went to Craig Fairbert of Tony for his depiction of a rooster pheasant.
First place in the 2017 Pheasant Stamp design contest went to Craig Fairbert of Tony for his depiction of a rooster pheasant.

Fairbert's advice to beginning artists is to practice, practice, and then practice some more. He urges novice artists to learn from their mistakes, noting that no painting can ever be perfect.

Brian Kuether of Greenfield was awarded second place, while two artists - Caleb Metrich of Lake Tomahawk and Todd Haefner of Janesville - tied for third place.

A $10 Pheasant Stamp is required to hunt pheasants in the state of Wisconsin, and proceeds bring in several hundred thousand dollars annually for the development, management, conservation and maintenance of wild pheasants and their habitat in Wisconsin and also support stocking efforts on Wisconsin's public hunting grounds.

2017 Wisconsin Waterfowl Stamp design contest

First place in the 2017 Waterfowl Stamp design contest was awarded to Sara Stack of Marengo, who submitted a painting of a pair of canvasbacks flying over Chequamegon Bay. Stack is a first-time participant in Wisconsin's wildlife stamp design contests.

Stack is an avid outdoorswoman who recently moved to Wisconsin. She started painting at the age of 13 when she got her first set of acrylic paints, and is largely self-taught. She chose to include the Ashland Breakwater Lighthouse in her painting after kayaking into Chequamegon Bay this summer. Though she doesn't have much space for a studio at the moment, she enjoys hunting and hiking, and is excited to take advantage of the fishing opportunities here in Wisconsin.

First place in the 2017 Waterfowl Stamp design contest was awarded to Sara Stack of Marengo.
First place in the 2017 Waterfowl Stamp design contest was awarded to Sara Stack of Marengo.

Duck and goose hunters are required to purchase the $7 Wisconsin Waterfowl Stamp in order to hunt waterfowl in the state, and proceeds are used for managing, restoring, and protecting habitat in Wisconsin and Canada for waterfowl and other wetland-associated species.

Please note that an electronic "stamp approval" is printed on the licenses of wild turkey, pheasant and waterfowl hunters at the time of purchase. Hunters will not receive an actual stamp unless they request it.DNR service centershave the state stamps available free of charge for hunters with current stamp approval. Anyone else interested in collecting the Wisconsin wildlife stamps may purchase one directly from the DNR.

For more information regarding Wisconsin's wildlife stamps, visit and search keyword "wildlife stamps."



Trout and salmon stamp contest winning entries announced

Contact(s): Joanna Griffin, DNR trout coordinator,, 608-264-8953; or Jennifer Sereno, DNR communications,, 608-770-8084

MADISON, Wis. - Five Wisconsin artists created six top entries for the Great Lakes Salmon and Trout Stamp and the Inland Trout Stamp contests organized by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

Following online voting, the top five designs from each category advanced for consideration by a panel of judges. The judges then ranked the entries and images of the first, second and third place winners will be displayed August 4 through the 14 at the Wisconsin State Fair.

"The winners include some of the top wildlife artists in the state and the submissions reflect their dedication to outdoor subjects," said Joanna Griffin, DNR trout coordinator. "We believe the winning stamps convey both the excitement of sportfishing and the beauty of the resource."

The Wisconsin Inland Trout Stamp winner is artist William Millonig of Campbellsport, whose previous credits include the 2013 Waterfowl Stamp, the 2010 Pheasant Stamp and the 2009, 2002 and 1995 Inland Trout Stamps. His stamp features a brown trout with a fly in its mouth. Second place went to Virgil Beck of Stevens Point and third place went to Robert Leum of Holmen.

The Wisconsin Great Lakes Trout and Salmon Stamp winner features a steelhead hooked on a perch imitation spoon by artist Craig Fairbert of Ladysmith. Fairbert also paints wildlife and won the 2010 Wisconsin Trout Stamp Contest. Second place went to Virgil Beck of Stevens Point and third place went to John Nemec Jr. of Peshtigo.

To view the winning entries, visit and search "Trout and Salmon Stamp Contest." In the weeks ahead, physical stamps will again be printed for collectors.

In addition to purchasing a state fishing license, anglers who wish to pursue trout and salmon must purchase an inland trout stamp or a Great Lakes salmon and trout stamp depending on the waters they intend to fish. Revenue from the stamp sales is used for restoring and maintaining habitat and in the case of the Great Lakes stamp, for stocking and rearing trout and salmon.

An annual fishing license costs $20 while an inland trout stamp or Great Lakes trout and salmon stamp both run $10. To learn about other licensing options and discounts or to purchase your license, visit


Read more: Previous Weekly News

Last Revised: Tuesday, August 02, 2016

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