Ducklings Survive Storm Drain Expedition

  • News Photo 3618
    A rescued duckling samples the hospitality to be found at Armstrong Browning Library.
  • News Photo 3621
    From left, Barbara Forquer, Kathleen Miller, Nikkoli Willson, and April Reinbolt work on retrieving the ducklings from the storm drain
  • News Photo 3619
    Cameron Park Zoo bird keepers April Reinbolt, left, Barbara Forquer, right, and zoo volunteer Nikkoli Willson, comfort two of the rescued ducklings.
July 11, 2006

Twenty-three ducklings were rescued Tuesday afternoon from a storm drain at the rear of the Armstrong Browning Library. Apparently unharmed, the tiny -- but noisy -- campus visitors were plucked to safety by Cameron Park Zoo bird keepers Barbara Forquer, April Reinbolt, and volunteer Nikkoli Willson, who were alerted by Kathleen Miller, administrative coordinator at the library.

Miller said a boy had heard the ducklings through a grating in the storm drain and with the help of a visiting delivery man, the drain cover was removed to expose the stranded birds, "huddled together and making a lot of noise," Miller said.

"One of our student workers identified them as Black Bellied Whistling Ducks, which are native to Texas," she said. "We believe they must have got into the drain from another entrance and made their way here to the library."

Forquer and Reinbolt said this was their second duck rescue of the day. Shortly before their arrival at Baylor, they had rescued 17 ducklings from the water treatment plant at Colcord and Fourth Street, Waco. They said they normally take the rescued ducklings to a stock pond, where the owner has other ducks that adopt the baby ducks.

"It's a duck haven there," said Reinbolt. "They'll have the time of their lives."

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