12 ducklings found close to death can't get enough of their new home
PUBLISHED: 09:21 12 June 2019 | UPDATED: 09:03 13 June 2019
A dozen ducklings plucked from certain death after their mother was killed at Great Yarmouth's Venetian Waterways are enjoying life in their new home.
All 12 survived the worst of starts after they were rescued and raised by animal volunteer Dan Goldsmith.
And after weeks of rehabilitation the plucky family are settling into their new home, enjoying the great outdoors at a private lake where they can duck and dive to their hearts content.
The brood was saved in the nick of time after their mother was killed, probably by a dog, still on her nest at the newly restored gardens at the end of April, just as they opened to the public.
They were spotted by a member of the public, some still half in their shells, their mother dead nearby.
Mr Goldsmith of Marine and Wildlife Rescue dashed to the scene and has been caring for the orphans at his home in Brasenose Avenue, Gorleston, ever since.
Now virtually fully grown they have been released at a private residence in Strumpshaw.
Mr Goldsmith said it was heartening to have a happy ending and seeing the mallard family in their element.
"They did remarkably well," he said.
"If you get them from freshly hatched they can easily imprint, but they became wild quite quickly.
"Now they are more than capable of looking after themselves, and are not far off flying.
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"They were so taken with having such an expanse of water.
"They stayed in their group and were really enjoying it and revelling in it.
"They had been on water where we had them, but it was not very deep.
"Where they are there is such a variety of things they can do.
"I was cautious because they were so weak when we got them.
"So it was really nice that they all survived.
"It was a real success."
He added it was too early to tell if they were males or females, the males developing their distinctive green plumage later on.
Three years ago a heron called Alan was shot at the Waterways.