13 September 2021

Firefighters to the rescue as ducks go daffy stuck in a drain

| Dominic Giannini
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Members of the Belconnen fire brigade helped save trapped ducklings. ACT Wildlife would like to know this man’s name so they can name a duckling after him. Photo: Facebook (Kim De Britt).

Firefighters have pulled off a daring duck rescue, after bird-lovers were put in a flap by the sight of two little ducklings who spent a day stuck in a drain.

One passer-by noticed the ducks waddle towards the drain on her way to work and stopped on her way home to check that the ducks were OK.

When she heard distressed peeps from the two ducklings, the woman called ACT Wildlife and volunteer Karen De Britt was soon on the scene, to confirm that the ducks, were in fact, stuck.

The drain was too narrow for her to get down, so she rang around different authorities before being passed on to the Belconnen fire brigade. The firefighters were there within 10 minutes to help conduct the rescue, Ms De Britt said.

“Starting from the initial phone call, they were fantastic,” she told Region Media.

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“We said, look we have a couple of ducklings stuck in the drain and we couldn’t get them, and they went, ‘yup, we’re on our way’.

“We just could not believe it. They were there 10 minutes later, set up shop and proceeded to whisk out two little ducks just like that.”

The rescued ducklings were placed in a clear box and put under the tree where their parents were still situated.

Unfortunately, their parents showed no interest in a reunion and the ducks were taken by a specialist ACT Wildlife volunteer to be looked after over the next couple of weeks before they can be released back into the wild.

Being a flying fox specialist herself, Ms De Britt said the ducklings were out of her care but in safe hands.

The grey Wood Duck with its new Pacific Black friends. Photo: Supplied.

Her colleague, Anne Gallagher, is taking care of the ducklings. Sadly, one has since died, at the three day mark that’s a vital milestone. At that point, ducklings without the care of their mother run out of the nutrients they received from the yolk in the egg.

Luckily the second duckling is thriving and has since been joined by three friends, who were found alone near the Green Shed in Mitchell.

Ms Gallagher will look after the ducklings for about a month until they grow to a size she can no longer care for at her house, and they will then be passed on to another volunteer, who has enough room to keep the ducklings until they are able to fly and be released.

Ms De Britt would love to know the name of the firefighter who rescued the ducklings so that she can name one after him.

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