Wayne County photographer takes winning wildlife stamp photo

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cedar waxwings
Roni Leatherman's stunning photograph of a pair of cedar waxwings will be featured on the 2024 Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp. (Roni Leatherman photo)

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A photograph of a pair of cedar waxwings will be featured on the 2024 Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources  Division of Wildlife. The winning photo was taken by Roni Leatherman, of Rittman, Ohio, in Wayne County.

Leatherman’s cedar waxwing photo was chosen as the winner of the 15th annual legacy stamp photo contest based on originality, composition, technical excellence, and overall beauty. Brenda Traffis, of Lake County, earned second place and Eric Tilson, of Wadsworth, came in third. The competition garnered 31 entries. All entries were required to be pictures of cedar waxwings.

Cedar waxwings are migratory songbirds that are found in Ohio year-round. They move in large flocks in search of berries. Waxwings are named for their red wingtips which look as though they were dipped in wax. They are known for emitting loud, high-pitched whistles and are often heard before they are seen.

Supporters can purchase the 2024 Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp, featuring the cedar waxwing, beginning next spring. The 2023 Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp, featuring a gray treefrog, is available now for purchase online through Ohio’s Wildlife Licensing System, at any location that sells hunting or fishing licenses, and on the HuntFish OH mobile app. A mail-in form is also available at wildohio.gov.

Fourteen dollars of every $15 Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp sold are invested in the state’s Wildlife Diversity Fund. This fund supports habitat restoration, wildlife research projects, educational materials, and efforts to conserve endangered and threatened species. Ohio residents can anticipate entering the 16th annual Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp Photo Contest next summer, with the winner being featured on the 2025 legacy stamp. Pollinators are the subject of the next stamp.

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