Every spring a pair of ducks come to the seminary and hang around our fountain. As the weeks go by, several other males appear and keep the first two company. Then one day eggs are hatched and baby ducks straggle out of their shells and follow mom to the fountain. I mean, they hatch and head straight away for water.
Well, today was the day. It's often impossible to know where the mother duck lays her eggs, but this year keen eyed people down in maintenance discovered the nest just outside their office and way up high on a cement ledge. The first order of business for the mother was to get the new babies down and she did that by fluttering to the ground and then standing around duck shouting at her brood to JUMP. The babies were skittering on the ledge, peering over the edge and probably thinking, "She wants us to do what?"
Finally one took the plunge but the others weren't in any hurry to do the same. A second came down but hit the concrete hard, flopped around and was still. We thought sure it was a goner, but no. After a few minutes that duck was up and around with the mother. Then a third jumped and did a bit of a Ta Da skip of celebration.
But, the rest did not want to jump, they backed up and squawked. So two of our great guys in environmental services decided they were going up. Got a ladder and Kirt went up to the ledge while Mike stood on the ladder and waited. Kirt caught two, handed them to Mike who came down and put them near the mother duck. And on and on until all were accounted for. She had ten babies.
When all were down they followed their mother into a garage which was not the way to go.
In the end the staff down there shooed them toward the sidewalk and the mother with ducklings in tow headed toward the fountain. Kathy went on ahead and waited so she could stop the traffic which might hinder them crossing the road. And then