The young animal fell down a drain on a housing estate in Caterhouse Road, Durham – and a nearby animal lover raised the alarm with the RSPCA after failing to free the duckling.
RSPCA Inspector Kaye Forsyth attended the scene at around 9.30pm on Saturday, April 11.
She said: “The duckling had been with its mother and siblings and had fallen down a drain on the housing estate.
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“Unfortunately, the duckling’s mother had left the scene with her other young when I arrived. The caller had already broken a hammer trying to get the duckling out, with no joy.
“I was able to see into the drain with my torch and could see the duckling swimming around in there, but, like the caller, couldn’t get the drain cover off.
“I called County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue and, luckily, the station is literally around the corner so they arrived just five minutes later, got the cover off and I fished the duckling out with my net.”
The duckling is now in the care of a local wildlife expert and will be released back into the wild when it is old enough.
Kaye praised the caller who alerted the RSPCA to the duckling’s plight, and stayed on the scene until she arrived and the fire service for the crew’s excellent work.
The RSPCA is continuing an emergency-only service through the lockdown period.