June 22, 2018
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Mother duck hatches ducklings in flower box on Kenduskeag Stream footbridge

By Dylan Martin, Special to the BDN

BANGOR, Maine — A mother duck nested on the Kenduskeag Stream footbridge hatched five ducklings Tuesday and there might be more to come, a local bank employee said.

“There were two walking around this morning,” Renee Roche of the downtown Bangor Savings Bank branch said Wednesday.

The duck is nesting in a flower box on the footbridge between the Pickering Square parking garage and the Bank of America building and has been there for nearly a month, Roche said.

A small bowl of water and some bread crumbs are next to the duck, with the ducklings huddled around.

“We’ve been checking on the duck periodically,” Roche said, adding that while local skateboarders caused concern for the duck’s health and safety, there have been no problems so far.

Hanging adjacent to the flower box, a sign reads, “Please don’t touch the duck, thank you, have a nice day.”

Two healthy ducklings hatched sometime Tuesday, Roche added, though the first three were stillborn. The bank employee said there are about three more eggs that have yet to hatch.

The Bangor animal control officer wasn’t available for comment, but Orrington Animal Control Officer Carla Brown said passers-by should keep their distance from the duck and ducklings for several reasons. Sometimes mother ducks are known to attack anyone who is perceived as a threat, she said, and sometimes frequent human interaction can mislead a duck into trusting every human it meets.

“The rule for wild animals is that it should be hands off,” Brown said.

As for why the first three ducklings were stillborn, Brown said it might have been the frequent rainfall.

“They could have gotten hypothermic with all the rain that could wear down the oil on their downy feathers,” Brown said.

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