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Posted: June 15, 2013 8:04 p.m.

Georgia has new wildlife license plates

Three new wild license plate designs are available in local tag offices, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division announced Thursday.

Georgians have cast their votes for the next generation of wildlife plates and the winning designs include the soaring bald eagle; the bobwhite quail, deer and wild turkey; and the brook trout rising to a fly.

All three plates help support important conservation work being done by the Wildlife Resources Division. Wildlife plates can be purchased for $60 ($25 manufacturing fee and a $35 plate fee) plus the normal $20 annual registration fee and ad valorem tax — if required. Annual renewal is available for a fee of $35 plus the normal $20 registration fee and ad valorem tax — if required.

Vehicle owners who have any of the previous wildlife tags can retain and renew their tags at the specialty tag fee of $35 plus the $20 normal tag fee and ad valorem tax — if required.

"We are pleased to announce the availability of these beautiful new designs for wildlife license plates," said Dan Forster, director of the Wildlife Resources Division.

"Our hope is that these plates will be extremely popular because their proceeds fund critical conservation work in Georgia."

Designs were solicited from artists from around the country and then were placed on the Internet for a public vote. The three new designs were selected by more than 18,000 people who participated in the voting process.

The soaring eagle tag replaces the eagle with the flag and hummingbird wildlife license plates, which will no longer be for sale. The design was developed by Cobb County graphic artist Omar Murcia formerly of THP Graphics Group, Inc., in Conyers. This license plate supports the Wildlife Resources Division’s Nongame Conservation Section, which uses proceeds from plate purchases and renewals to fund programs focused on conserving Georgia’s nongame and endangered wildlife, rare plants and natural habitats, from bald eagles to pitcherplant bogs.

No state funds are provided for nongame wildlife conservation, education and recreation. The projects are funded solely through federal grants, direct donations and fundraising initiatives such as the nongame license plates. 

The quail, white-tailed deer and wild turkey design replaces the state’s second wildlife license plate, which featured a deer and quail taking flight over a field.

This design is original artwork from famed wildlife artist Joe Thornbrugh of Red Crow Studio-Gallery in Victor, Mont.

This tag supports conservation practices in the Bobwhite Quail Initiative, Georgia’s first and only state-funded incentive program for wildlife habitat conservation on private land.

Georgia continues to lose natural habitat for quail, songbirds and other wildlife in part because of the state’s fast-growing population, and changing land management practices. 

The trout chasing a fly replaces the Trout Unlimited logo design and benefits the DNR’s trout restoration work.

This original artwork of a native brook trout chasing a fly was designed by Broderick Crawford of Crawford Art Gallery in Clayton. This design benefits conserving, protecting and restoring of Georgia’s trout fisheries.

For more information on Georgia’s wildlife license plates and the projects they support, visit georgiawildlife.com.

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