Photos capture the remarkable rescue of several ducklings who fell down a drain near Harborough​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Edan March climbed down a manhole in the pouring rain in the early hours of the morning to reunite the mother with her babies

By Phil Hibble
Monday, 16th May 2022, 7:01 pm
Updated Monday, 16th May 2022, 7:45 pm
Edan March climbed down a manhole in the pouring rain to reunite the mother with her babies
Edan March climbed down a manhole in the pouring rain to reunite the mother with her babies

This is the remarkable sight of several ducklings being rescued after they fell down a drain near Market Harborough.

The neighbours were alerted in the early hours of the morning by noises from the frantic mother - and that was when Edan March sprang into action in the pouring rain.

Once he worked out that the ducklings had fallen in, he managed to lift off the cover with tools before passing all seven babies to his partner, Georgia, under the watchful eye of daughter Piper.

Edan March climbed down a manhole in the pouring rain to reunite the mother with her babies

The family have now all been reunited.

Taking up the story, Georgia Littlejohn said the mother duck had chosen their front garden in Marsh Drive, Husbands Bosworth, as the perfect place to lay her eggs and had been nesting there for four weeks - and on Sunday May 15, the brood started hatching, so they knew she would soon be taking her ducklings to the pond.

But in the early hours of this morning (Monday), a neighbour messaged the family to say that the duck was distressed.

"I quickly realised a duckling had fallen down the drain but it wasn’t visible even when I lifted the drain grid," said Georgia.

Edan March climbed down a manhole in the pouring rain to reunite the mother with her babies

"I attempted to coax the duckling out by putting a tray in down the drain in the hope that it would climb onto it for safety but it was frightened.

"After a few minutes, I noticed there wasn’t just one quack I could hear but multiple. The duck had no other ducklings with her so I could only assume her whole brood had fallen in.

"My partner, Ed, came out with our one-year-old daughter, Piper, and he listened above each manhole and drain to workout where the quacks were coming from."

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As they did not have any drain keys, Ed found some tools in the garage which he used to lift the lid off.

"We could see a few ducklings down there, flapping and quacking and we knew we had to save them," added Georgia.

"Ed climbed down and handed me a duckling one by one, which I led to mother duck.

"We counted seven and mummy duck was thrilled to have her ducklings back following her around.

"Piper and I led the ducklings to the pond and stood on each drain grid to ensure no more fell in."

But that was not the end of the story.

Ed was sure he could still hear one tiny quack so he followed it and lifted up a further two manholes.

"He found another duckling but as he went to grab it, it ran off down the pipe," said Georgia.

"We waited and waited but the chirp was inaudible. Ed went to the pond and to our surprise there were eight ducklings.

"We think the last one had made its way into the pond through the underground pipes.

"We’re so pleased that our little duck family are safe and sound.

"Well done mummy duck for relentlessly calling your ducklings and alerting us to come and help you - well done to Ed for willingly climbing down a manhole at 6am on a Monday morning to rescue some babies!"