Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Got Turtle (pics)?

An Eastern Box Turtle peers curiously at your narrator from the protection of his armoring. Perhaps you, too, are a turtle aficionado and enjoy documenting the animals on pixels (or film). If so, you may want to consider submitting your best stuff for the next Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp competition.

The "OWLS", as it's known, was launched by the Ohio Division of Wildlife in 2010, and featured a photo of a Baltimore Oriole. The stunning image that graced that inaugural stamp was taken by Ohio photographer Russ Reynolds. The 2011 OWLS sported an Eastern Amberwing dragonfly; the 2012 stamp depicted a Spotted Salamander, and the current stamp is graced with an image of a Black-capped Chickadee.

Getting right up in the grill of suspicious subjects such as this Midland Painted Turtle is not necessarily easy, but if you've done so and snagged some good images, you might be the next OWLS featured photographer. Any species of native Ohio turtle - there are a dozen species - is eligible. The deadline for submission is August 16, and all of the details are RIGHT HERE.

Would such a mug as this Common Snapping Turtle possibly be pretty enough to feature on the stamp? Who knows; that's for the judges to decide. Once all of the entries are collected, the judging will take place by an esteemed and knowledgeable panel of jurists in early September. Whoever's photo is declared the winner will see vast fortunes ($500) and widespread fame come their way.

Cute as a button but looking rather surly is this Spiny Softshell Turtle. It's a hard animal to approach, but would certainly be a worthy OWLS subject.

The Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp exists to raise funds for habitat protection, endangered species research, and educational efforts related to wildlife. Perhaps you've seen those nifty booklets that the Ohio Division of Wildlife produces - birds, spiders, butterflies, dragonflies, mammals, etc.? The OWLS stamp helps fund such outreach, and to date about one million of those booklets have been given out to Ohioans (they're free).

So, if you've got a candidate turtle photo for the stamp - or manage to get one soon - consider submitting it. Again, all of the details ARE HERE. If you want to purchase a stamp, current or past, GO HERE.


jaredmizanin said...

Great post. I was considering entering, but pretty much withdrew myself as my photos aren't up to par with other photographers. But knowing my entry fee will go to such good use, I feel it is more of a donation. Who cares if I get blown out of the water. Now I just got to figure out what white foam core is and I am all set.

Jim McCormac said...

I'm glad you entered, Jared, and best of luck!