Game Bird Habitat Stamp photo competition

The New Zealand Fish and Game Council in cooperation with the New Zealand Game Bird Habitat Trust has agreed to run a photographic competition to select a winning image to be used on the Game Bird Habitat Stamp. 

The Habitat Stamp is traditionally launched on February 2nd each year in acknowledgement of World Wetland Day.

Paradise shelduck (Tadorna variegata)

RCD 8499A2The selected game bird species to feature in this first photographic competition is the paradise shelduck. 

By chance, rather than design, the paradise shelduck was also the first species to appear on the Game Bird Habitat Stamp when it was launched in 1994, it featured again in 2004.

Photographic competition

The competition is open to anyone, except those directly involved with the competition and judging (including their families and relatives). The competition is also not open to Fish & Game staff or their families.

If you are under the age of 16 you must have permission to enter from your parent or guardian. By submitting an entry for the competition, your parent/carer/guardian is deemed to have given such consent and to agree to the use of the entry as described in these terms and conditions.

Your entry must be submitted digitally via the Fish and Game website.  No other forms of entry will be accepted.

By submitting images, each entrant confirms and warrants that:

  • the images are originals and have not been circulated or published previously
  • they are the sole author/photographer of each entry and that it is their original work;
  • they own the copyright and any other intellectual property rights of each image;
  • if anyone is pictured in the image (or, where the image shows any persons under 18, the consent of their parent/guardian) for the usage rights required and will indemnify against any claims made by any third parties in respect of such infringement;
  • they have received any necessary permissions from the owner(s) of depicted background objects including land, and buildings included in submitted images for the usage rights required
  • that if selected to feature on the Game Bird Habitat Stamp they will become the sole property of Fish & Game to use for all commercial and promotional activities.
  • There is one prize to be won. The New Zealand Game Bird Habitat Trust will buy a full season 2020 Fish & Game New Zealand Game Bird licence for the winner of the competition. The prize is not exchangeable or transferable and cannot be taken for cash. It is only available for the 2020 Game Bird Season, and it cannot be transferred to a later season. In winner must supply a New Zealand address by 1 April 2020 so the correct regional licence can be purchased.

What to enter

  1. Photographs of the annual nominated species in its wild natural habitat
  2. Photographs must be a minimum 1MB – maximum 5MB file.
  3. Entries must not have been a ‘winner’ in any other photographic competition or be currently submitted for any other competition.
  4. A maximum of three entries may be entered per applicant
  5. Birds photographed in captivity such as in zoos, wildlife parks or similar locations are not eligible.

Entries for the 2019 competition have now closed

Although the competition winner  has yet to be announced, the next game bird species to feature is the NZ Shoveler (spoonbill).

This will become the species for 2021’s game bird habitat stamp.


A panel of Judges will select images based upon technical quality, plus the aspect and background to the subject bird.  The ideal shot will be of the nominated species at home in the sort of natural environment where it will thrive.  Judges will look for diversity, originality and creativity of the composition. Judging will be anonymous.

The decision of the organisers is final and no correspondence will be entered into concerning the competition’s judging and organisation.  Once the winner is announced, all ownership rights to non-successful entrants will return to those entrants.

Announcement of winners

Judges will choose the winning shot and contact the winner privately.  The public will not be informed of the winner until the Game Bird Habitat Stamp is launched for the appropriate year.

Usage Rights

By entering the competition, you grant the Trust an exclusive, irrevocable licence to reproduce, enlarge, publish, exhibit, or commercialise on any item or in any media, the images for any purpose to further its aims and objectives.

The organisers will make every reasonable effort to ensure that name credits are given where appropriate.


Lead time                            Preparation and publicity to commence with Special Game Edition of Fish and Game Magazine March 2019

Submission period             Entries are required by 1 September 2019

Selection period                 Selection of winning entries will be made by mid October 2019.

Preparation of habitat stamp & its release    Winning entry will be submitted by the New Zealand Fish and Game Council to NZ Post by mid November 2019.  The image will feature on the Habitat Stamp to be released February 2nd 2020.