A mother duck was reunited with her ducklings after they were rescued from a three-storey high chimney pot in Staffordshire.
RSPCA inspector Herchy Boel was called to Two Trees Close, Tamworth, on Friday 22 May after residents grew concerned about the crying ducklings.
Herchy said: “Residents had heard the ducklings chirping for around a week and grew more concerned for their welfare. They were finally able to locate the cries and realised they were stuck in a chimney pot on the roof of a three-storey townhouse.
“It looks as though mum has laid her eggs in a nest at the top of the chimney and when her ducklings hatched, they couldn’t get down. She had flown the nest and we were worried that we’d have to take the duckling into our care but as I waited for the fire service to arrive, she waddled down the road towards me sqwarking and calling out to her babies. It was adorable.”
Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service used an aerial platform to reach the chimney and carefully pluck the ducklings from their nest and secure them in carriers.
Firefighter Duncan McHugh said: “We used the aerial ladder platform to get the ducklings who were trapped in the chimney. It’s a very varied job – were can go from fighting fires to rescuing animals in some of the most random places. It’s the second time we’ve been to this address for the same thing so the mum must think it’s a safe place for her babies.”
Herchy checked them all over and followed mum to a nearby canal. She said: “We carried the ducklings over to the canal around the corner and there was mum. She paddled over and greeted all of her babies as we released them onto the water.
“It was absolutely lovely to be able to rescue all of the ducklings and then reunite the whole family and watch them swim away. That’s what this job is all about. I’d like to say a massive thank you to the fire crew who helped save these babies safely and to the residents who’d monitored them and called us for help.”
If you find a duckling on its own, RSPCA advise to keep a distance but monitor. It is likely that mum will be nearby and return.
If you see more than one duckling, can see a dead mother nearby or are concerned the duckling is sick or injured then RSPCA advise to contact their emergency hotline on 0300 1234 999.
For more advice on what to do if you find a lone duckling see our website: www.rspca.org.uk/adviceandwelfare/wildlife/orphanedanimals/ducklings