Thursday could have been a harrowing day for a lost family of local ducks. But — thanks to a Montrealer who stepped in to escort them — the ducks successfully made their way from Mont-Royal to Parc La Fontaine, trekking three kilometres through city streets to get there.
Lesley Jacobi told MTL Blog she was headed down the mountain with a friend when they spotted the mama duck and her nine baby ducklings.
"We wondered where they were going since it was away from Beaver Lake. So we followed her along and it became clear she wasn't stopping and headed straight for Avenue du Parc," recalled Jacobi.
"Thankfully her timing was good and they mostly crossed when traffic was stopped at other lights though we stopped a few cars when a little duckling hadn't cleared yet."
Jacobi's friend left as the ducks crossed Boulevard Saint-Laurent, and she said she saw a police car nearby so she considered leaving the ducks in their care. But the police car drove off, so Jacobi said she decided to stick with them.
It's a good thing because she had to launch a rescue mission when one of the ducklings fell into a manhole.
"I was devastated and the mama duck was quacking around it. While I was on the phone with the city, a stranger opened the manhole and got the little duckling out," Jacobi said.
Jacobi said she stayed with the ducks, using her bike as a barrier to keep them on the sidewalk until they made it safely to their destination: Parc La Fontaine.
"Each major street we crossed was such a relief. It was all very surreal, adorable [...] Those ducks were in a lot of pics yesterday, they were minor celebrities as they walked by," she said.
"It was incredible how she knew where she was going."
Jacobi also made it safely to work, but she did have to send her boss an unusual text explaining why she would be late.
"My boss was understanding," said Jacobi.
"I texted her to say [...] I'm 'busy with the ducks.'"