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  • Writer's pictureRae Gellel

Back at the Royal Arsenal to Rescue More Ducklings

We were all feeling a bit worse for wear today, generally exhausted and perhaps a bit hung over (don't judge me!), when we received yet another report of 11 newly hatched ducklings in the ornamental lagoon at the Woolwich Arsenal complex. Not relishing another lengthy and wet rescue we dragged our tired selves over there with our nets and waders. As mentioned previously, the lagoon is chlorinated, with no natural food sources, and lots of dangerous filters and pumps, so it is not a suitable environment for ducklings. Ramps have now been added that provide access to the islands, which prevent the ducklings from drowning as they have done in the past, but this alone is not enough to make it a safe habitat.

Thankfully a pretty textbook rescue operation then ensued - we all know the routine by now. We luckily managed to net the mother duck fairly quickly, before she became spooked and flew away, which would mean her ducklings staying with a rescue until they were old enough for release. Catching adult ducks is always really difficult but we've now had plenty of practice! Then several laps of the huge lagoon were required to round up all of the tiny ducklings.

This is the best possible outcome as it means that we don't have to split up the family, and can instead simply relocate them all, releasing them in a more natural body of water tomorrow. We are fast running out of local lakes to release to, if anyone knows of any quiet spots in the borough.

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