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VIDEO | Duckling rescue and reunion in West Bend, Wi

April 24, 2024 – West Bend, Wi – Quite the pickle Wednesday morning in downtown West Bend, Wi as a duckling went rogue from its mother and 11 siblings.

A small audience stood witness on N. Main Street as a mother Mallard escorted her parade from the Milwaukee River up to Old Settlers Park. During the journey, about five of the yellow-and-black tufts became separated from the group.

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Two stragglers in particular had a difficult time summiting the steps…. and the Mother duck offered desperation encouragement… by simply walking away.

After a bit of exploring and a spin down Main Street, separation anxiety set in.

There was a brief chase up Main Street… and then eventually…

… the band was back together.

Mallard ducks are not new to the downtown. In 2022 there was a mallard and his mate scoping out some tractors in the flowerbed in front of Tennies Ace Hardware.

On a history note, neighbors may remember the ducks that would land in the courtyard at Silverbrook School.

duck

“They’d land and nest and lay their eggs and we’d have to watch for that because the janitor would have to lead them out,” said Maurie Osgood. That janitor was head custodian Carl Kufahl. ‘Papa Duck’ according to custodian Bob Glodowski.

“He did that for eight years; Carl would escort them out,” he said. “There was a hallway and kids would stand on both sides so the ducks wouldn’t veer off course and Carl would lead them through the breezeway and out the door.”

Carl Kufahl retired in 2004. Glodowski said the new building design at Silverbook has opened the courtyard so now there’s no need to parade the ducks through the school.

What do you remember the ducks at Silverbrook? Former students have to be in their 20s now… any recollections? I think students lined the hallways and offered encouragement.  Would love to hear from you.

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