Twenty-two ducklings were found abandoned in a tote sitting in the sun outside a liquor store Thursday in Putnam, according to a wildlife rehabilitator.
“I didn’t really realize what was in there. I knew I did see a little squawking beak,” said Katie Spenard, an employee at Big Gary’s Discount Liquors.
While she thought it might have been one or two ducklings, she found 22 of them trapped in a covered 18-gallon tote in the beating sun.
Those ducklings were panting, according to Spenard, who ran them inside. The ducks, all different sizes were trampling one another.
Spenard said employees, even customers, used empty wine boxes to separate the ducks.
But the ducklings got cold. So Katie and her sister put them in her sister’s van where they and an animal services officer with Northeaster Connecticut Council of Governments (NECCOG) started rubbing the ducks to warm them up.
“They were going into shock. Some of them might have been (seizing). We weren’t really sure,” Spenard explained, adding her sister called State Police and Sherry Harmon, rehabilitator and president of Nutmeg Acres Wildlife Rehabilitation.
“When they came to me, one of them was in very critical condition, unresponsive, trampled, and unfortunately that one did not make it,” Harmon said. She had put that duckling in an incubator and tube fed it.
She’s still nursing the 21 other ducklings to health which are domestic, not wild ducks, according to Harmon.
“We can only speculate, but Easter just happened. Unfortunately people will buy cute chicks and ducklings,” Harmon said.
She hopes this time around, they find a loving home.
“That they find amazing homes that they can live their ducky lives out,” Harmon said.
There weren’t cameras on the side of the building where the ducklings were found, according to liquor store staff.
Troop D said they are not investigating. NECCOG said they don’t have enough information to launch an investigation but anyone with information on who might be responsible is asked to give them a call.