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Rescued ducklings are hand-reared

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Ducklings are having a quacking time after being taken under the wing of their rescuers.

A brood of four ducklings on Silverdale boating lake were saved on Friday followed by five more the next day – as they were targets for seagulls.

‘The mother has allowed them to come out of the nest and they were a couple of days old when they were rescued,’ said Sandy Huyton of Dolittle’s Animal Centre at Cregg Mill in Silverdale.

Sandy is looking after the group of five ducklings at home and at the centre, while the others are being cared for by 16-year-old Jake Callow, who has been working over the summer at the Silverdale cafe.

Jake prompted both rescues when he became concerned about the risk posed to the baby ducks by seagulls.

Paddle boats were used to reach the ducklings and Jack even ended up in the water during the first rescue mission.

Now the ducklings are receiving VIP treatment from Jake and Sandy.

The ducklings’ rescue and subsequent progress has sparked interest online with over 1,300 people following their progress via the Dolittle’s Facebook page, said Sandy.

‘Jake’s ducklings have doubled in size, they are doing really well,’ said Sandy, who revealed Jake is going all out to care for them even blending up feeds.’

Sandy explained of the five she’s caring for: ‘They’re in a special container that’s got heat pads, they’re on duckling feed. They have bath time twice a day. I feed them whilst they’re in the bath. I feed them their food in the bath as they naturally would feed in the water.

‘Their first swim is at 9am and the second one about 3pm. Afterwards I get them all dried off and it’s back into their bed of hay.’

Shortly the ducklings will move on to solid foods and it is planned to release the ducklings around November if they’ve increased in size and weight.

Part of Dolittle’s work is educating members of the public on animal welfare and the ducklings can be seen at the centre, which is open 1pm to 4pm Tuesday to Sunday.

 

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