Nine new ducklings: Amy the Library Duck’s entire brood. Believe me, we tried to get Amy and her brood to the nearest water (1.5 miles away), putting the ducklings in a padded but clear box so she could see them, and then walking towards the lake. She followed for less than half a block before flying away back to the nest. And she was not leading them on their own to the water. Nor would she let us get near her to catch her. (Catching adult mallards has always been impossible for Team Duck.)
After some futile attempts to catch the mother, who put on the first broken-wing display I’ve ever seen in a mallard, we gave up and took all nine (healthy and strong) babies to the rehab person. This always breaks my heart, but it’s better than letting all the ducklings die. We had three plans worked out but, as I suspected, we wound up, in the end, taking the ducklings to rehab—plan C.
Here’s our haul from this morning. (Please don’t ask me about alternative plans; we’ve thought of them all and had six people there dealing with the issue.)
BUT we are still tending a mother and her ten offspring on the plaza between two dorms, as the babies cannot escape until they can fly. (There’s a large fence.) Here are Maria and her babies, whom we tend three times a week. Note that these are older—probably at least two weeks old.
I’ll have a longer post about this in a few days—after I’ve recovered.