Exeter students have attempted to rescue a family of ducklings, stranded in their college’s gardens.
The ducklings and their mother were discovered last week, apparently unable to return to the river. The crisis prompted intervention from the Exeter JCR. JCR President Edward Nickell organised a group of students to transport them back to the Isis.
Nickell told Cherwell, “I bought some duckfood and a ‘duck carrying box’ from the covered market. I asked the JCR for help and the response was fantastic.” He recieved “at least 20 volunteers. Some even sent mini CVs: ‘My grandfather has ducks’ and ‘I’m experienced in babysitting screaming children’. I even had people outside College asking to join in! I was slightly less impressed by one response,‘I’m more than comfortable handling birds and I have experience of ushering them back to the river at 5 AM, know what I mean.’”
However, the recruitment process was cut short after magpies began to attack the ducklings. Despite witnessing her brood being cruelly picked off, Mother Duck “wasn’t very maternal, and just went and sat up on the library roof watching her ducklings from afar.”
Nickell explained, “A few JCR members tried to get that motherducker and bring her down to the river, with her one remaining duckling. “
Only one duckling survived the rescue attempt. ‘Mother Duck’ has since been spotted back in Exeter gardens.