Monday, October 15, 2012

Things are "Just Ducky" over in Canberra!

A duckling demonstrates how to use the special ramp at the
Australian Academy of Science. Photo: Supplied

As the days get warmer, people are not the only ones seeking the sunshine: wildlife is also making a reappearance in Canberra.
Ducklings are finding their way out of the nest, crossing roads and entering ponds and pools.
Almost a dozen ducklings and their parents have already used a specially made duck ramp in the Australian Academy of Science's Shine Dome moat. The duck ramp was put in place after several cases of ducklings getting stuck in the moat, and in pipes, requiring the fire brigade's help to free them.
 ''Originally we had problems with them falling in and couldn't get out, and they would get tired and we had a few die. So we put in the little ramp for them,'' Australian Academy of Science acting chief executive Ben Patterson said. ''One year some of them had got stuck in the pipes and we had to call the fire brigade to rescue them.'' The Australian Academy of Science is not the only place that receives these spring visits.
Over at the Australian War Memorial the curators also find ducklings in residence around Remembrance Day.
Each year the ducks walk to the pool of reflection, and to keep them safe the war memorial has also built a ramp for the ducks to enter and exit the pool.
''It's called the duckboard. It's basically there so that the ducklings can get out and it's only there when we have ducks on the pond,'' building services manager Roland Trebesius said. ''We put barriers up to keep the public out and when she [the mother duck] shows signs of wanting to leave, we walk them out. 'Once I ended up walking them down Anzac Parade,'' Mr Trebesius said.
 It is planned to soon erect traffic signage on College Street in Belconnen after a concerned bus driver and passengers contacted Territory and Municipal Services officers about ducks crossing there. 
''I've seen them probably three or four times in the past few weeks … they get about halfway across the road and then a car comes and frightens them off,'' ACTION bus driver Brian McCallum said. ''I thought they go backwards and forwards all the time, so I got in contact with TAMS in order to get some safety protection for them.''
Territory and Municipal Services officers in Canberra will create a duck crossing in order to keep the birds safe while they file one-by-one across the road.

Reproduced from The Canberra Times with thanks:


Maa said...

Aw... how smart is that. Sue

The Elephant's Child said...

Its lovely. Not only that the ducks and ducklings are out and about, but also that so many people are concerned for their safety. This in the 'city without a soul'. Bah humbug.

Jo said...

We have them in Bruce near work, so cute. They could do with a tunnel or bridge though as they have to cross the road a bit.