Five little ducks went down a grate.
Mama duck left, she could not wait.
The little ducks chirped and men arrived.
They rescued the ducks and kept them alive.
It wasn’t a nursery rhyme — just another day in the lives of Pittsburgh Animal Care and Control officers, who spent Friday working with others to save the ducklings that had fallen into a sewer grate in front of The Waterworks Cinemas near Fox Chapel.
They were initially called at 9:30 a.m. after Dan McConnell reported he had witnessed the fowl walking afoul as they followed the mother duck and slipped through the grate, according to Pittsburgh Public Safety officials.
McConnell was servicing fire extinguishers at the theater and saw the ducklings go down the grate.
City Animal Care and Control Officers Duane Eagan and Jim Genco initially thought there were three ducklings trapped.
They were able to lure two of them into nets with popcorn from the theater and get them out. The third refused to leave the sewer pipe, but they were eventually able to rescue it, too.
They shuttled the ducklings to Humane Animal Rescue Wildlife Center in Verona where they will be fostered until they can be released to the wild.
McConnell heard more chirping from the sewer and called the officers back and at about 1:35 p.m. two more ducklings, who had been hiding in a different pipe, were rescued. They were taken to their kin in Verona as well.
The mother duck was never found.
“Public Safety thanks everyone who pitched in to save the five ducklings,” it said in a Facebook post.
Another rescue Saturday
Rescuing ducklings is a big part of the animal control officers jobs.
Officials hadn’t yet released further information, but according to the Pittsburgh Police Zone 5 Twitter feed, another rescue operation happened Saturday in Larimer.
It’s been said that no two days in policework are ever the same. Some days we chase bad guys, other days we read to kids. Today we… well… just watch the video. 🚔 #duckrescue @PghPolice @PghFireFighters pic.twitter.com/HuItjT1BBn
— Pgh Police Zone 5 (@PghZone5) June 15, 2019
— Pittsburgh Fire Fighters (@PghFireFighters) June 15, 2019
It builds upon a brace of other rescues:
On May 8, they rescued 10 ducklings from a West End storm drain.
On May 19, a Tarentum officer rescued six ducklings in a similar predicament.
Pittsburgh police also helped a turtle in Lawrenceville on Tuesday.