PLATTSBURGH — The fate of six unlucky ducklings turned around when Sgt. Ken Parkinson of Plattsburgh City Police Department saved the day.
Parkinson was at the station when he received a call from Kerry Kotzur, who is resident assistant at Lake Forest Senior Living Community Inc. on Lake Forest Drive.
Through the staff-office window, she had seen a mother duck and nine ducklings hanging out near the storm drain.
“I went outside, as staff thought a duck may have (climbed into) the drainage pipe from the roof,” Kotzur said in a brief written account about the saga.
“The mother rounded up the babies and left — and I heard ‘peep, peep, peep.’”
She looked through the grate over the storm drain and spotted six ducklings inside.
“There was no way they could have gotten out,” Kotzur told the Press-Republican.
And though she tried, she said, “the grate was too heavy to lift.”
So Kotzur called the police.
Parkinson, accompanied by Patrolman Brandy Kiroy, removed the grate.
“He was very strong,” Kotzur said.
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Parkinson retrieved the ducklings, placing them in a box.
Then Kotzur carried them around for a least an hour, she said, hoping the peeping babies would attract the mother.
And though police searched the area on four-wheelers as well, they didn’t find her and the rest of her brood.
So City Police Department dispatcher Nikki Bridges contacted wildlife rehabilitator Wendy Hall, owner of the Adirondack Wildlife Refuge in Wilmington, about what to do with the duck family.
Bridges said Hall was willing to come get the ducklings but advised the department that finding a natural habitat with another mother duck was another option.
She said ducklings, unlike other birds, do not have to be fed. Rather, they simply need a mother duck to show them how to get their own food.