It is quite common for mother ducks to nest away from water and then lead their ducklings to water soon after hatching. This may involve going through built up areas and crossing busy roads to get to the water.
Unfortunately, it is very difficult to help a duck family across a road without frightening them. If they become frightened, the ducklings will scatter around and the mother is likely to fly off. However, it will help the birds if the traffic is directed when they are trying to cross a road and this may also prevent accidents.
Slowly and carefully herding the family group to water is probably most effective. However, if they become separated, the ducklings can be put in an open-topped box and left until the mother returns., The ducklings should then be gently released from the box so that the family are back together as a group. The mother will keep an eye on you and will only return when she believes you are at a safe distance.
Remember, that in most in cases it is best to leave a duck family alone. The mother duck will know where she is going and is best placed to rear her young.
If you are ABSOLUTELY SURE that the ducklings are orphaned or abandoned then please contact our 24-hour cruelty and advice line 0300 1234 999 to report the incident. In the meantime, however, keep the ducklings contained, warm and dry - NEVER put them on water without their mother.
Caution:- Handling of any animal either domestic, wild, dead or alive may be potentially hazardous. Obvious dangers include bites, scratches and general hygiene issues. Common sense should be applied in all instances and if unsure, seek additional advice or assistance should be sought. Personal hygiene should be taken into consideration after handling any animal, whether it’s domestic, wild, dead or alive.
Other useful information:
Ducklings and waterproofing
Ducklings in a swimming pool