Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary, 17 Barker Road, Lebanon, CT, 06249

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Majestic Diary

October 11, 2008

Today was our second attempt at rescuing Domino the duck from Coventry Lake. He was hatched out at a Coventry school (I am getting the details to write the school Principal and Superintendant). We even know who dropped him off. Locals have been trying to catch him for nearly two months now.

We went to the beach to catch him on land two weeks ago because locals told us he would come far onto shore. Domino refused to come off water, but it was not an unsuccessful day because one of the volunteers who showed up had a 3 seat jetski and offered to help us do a water rescue.

We were supposed to meet last weekend, but we were rained out, so it was rescheduled for today. I only wish I could have brought my camera to take photos, but I needed to participate in the rescue using our kayak.

Locals told us that when they tried rounding him up using the jetski, Domino would swim too close to shore for them to follow and he would hide under the small docks. So I set out on the kayak and Tony hopped onto the jetski, taking a big "butterfly" net with him. I began by herding Domino and a group of mallards away from the shoreline and towards the center of the lake. Once I had him heading towards the middle, the mallards took off and Tony came in on the jetski. He couched the operator on how to gently herd Domino further to the center of the lake.

We were fully prepared for an hour event of slowly and carefully tiring Domino out (which tends to be the norm before capture is possible). By coaxing a duck to dive, they tire out and can no longer go down as deep under water, or pop up as far away. That's when we normally make the "real" attempts to capture the duck, which tends to take another hour. That's what we have to do when we rescue with kayaks. Not today. Not with a jetski. It took me 5 minutes to get him out to the jetski team and then it only took them an additional 5 minutes and Tony caught him. I saw his white belly go into the net and I turned to shore, towards the volunteers and yelped, "He caught him!" And everyone on shore cheered.

Bruce and Lori offered their jetski services in the future should we ever need their help getting to a duck or goose out of our reach. FANTASTIC!  I just love it when volunteers get so involved--not only in the animal they want to see saved, but to help other animals in a similar predicament in the future. Amazing. And it felt so good to get Domino out of there and into our sanctuary.

People often fail to understand why a jetski is so vital to our rescue endeavor. These volunteers today saw first hand what we can do with a jetski. It is less stressful for the animal because it only takes 10 minutes to capture them rather than 2 hours, and it is safer for those participating. And... we are guaranteed our bird. Getting to ducks and geese quickly saves lives.


Domino posing


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