A relatively quiet Sunday afternoon for the Lexington Fire Department’s “Mall Rats” was interrupted when they received a call about some ducklings in distress.
The request came in around 3:30 p.m. from Lowe’s Home Improvement store on Nichols Park Road, said Lt. Dave Sullivan of Engine 15, also known as the “Mall Rats.” A family of 10 ducklings had fallen into a storm drain and couldn’t get out. A couple walking into Lowe’s had seen the mother duck hanging out near the drain. When the couple walked over to investigate, they heard the ducklings.
“They were floating right there,” Sullivan said. “We pulled one of the drains up, the woman volunteered her canvas bag, and (we) got nine of the 10 in the canvas bag. Then we spent the rest of the time fishing the 10th one out who was not being cooperative.”
While the firefighters worked to free the last duckling, the mother duck squawked at the men, Sullivan said. In total, it took about an hour to free the animals.
This is the first time in Sullivan’s 21-year firefighting career that he has responded to a duck-related call. The same went for firefighters Andy Kenner and Eric Bottoms, who have rescued cats before.
“It was just a matter of applying what we learned for other situations and applying it to the situation at hand,” Sullivan said.