After weeks of trying to rescue four pet ducks at a local beach, a Pasadena family is hoping to inspire people to surrender their pets to reputable shelters and rescues when they can no longer provide care.
Katrina Williams’ sons were fishing at Sunset Beach when they saw people approach the water with a large Amazon box containing white and black ducks. They told the boys that they had rehabilitated the ducks and were returning them to the wild. They then put the ducks into the water and left.
For the next week, Katrina went back to the cove to check on the ducks.
“I kind of worried about them after a week because there wasn’t any food or freshwater access for them,” Katrina said.
Her fears were confirmed when the family found one of the two white ducks dead.
Katrina decided to try to rescue them. But when she called local government agencies and rescues to find someone to help rescue the ducks, she found that they were unable to help.
“Everybody said that since they were in the water and they were in a spot that we could not get to them, there was basically nothing that they could do,” Katrina said.
Unwilling to give up on the ducks, Katrina used Facebook to find people willing to help her rescue the ducks. Meanwhile, her son, Dexter Williams, took his kayak out to a log close to where the ducks were hiding and left freshwater and cracked corn for them. After a couple of days, a woman responded to Katrina’s post. During that time, one of the two black ducks died.
It took another three days, but the group was finally able to corner the remaining black duck against a pier. George Smith Jr., a neighbor who had gone to the beach to fish, helped by scooping up the duck in his net.
“I have never paddled so hard in my life,” Katrina said.
The white duck proved too difficult to capture.
“We tried the rest of the afternoon to catch the white one, with no success,” Katrina said. “I basically watched it and knew there was nothing I could do.”
The rescued black duck is doing well at her new home with a new flock. Although the remaining white duck was never caught, Katrina heard that it was spotted with a flock of wild ducks.
“Hopefully, if that is the case, it’s now found ways to survive,” Katrina said.
Because of her small size and unformed wings, the black duck was likely an Easter present.
“A lot of people do that with ducks and chickens and rabbits and all kinds of things around the Easter season,” Katrina said. “They’ll get them as cute little pets. And then they grow up a little bit and they realize that they’re going to need a little bit more care, and people try to dump them out in the wild.”
Unfortunately, the abandoned pets are often unprepared to survive in the wild after a life of being cared for and protected by people.
“They’ve not been taught,” Katrina said. “They’re not equipped to take care of themselves like that.”
There are many places where people can surrender their pets humanely. Some rescues and shelters accept many types of animals, often with no questions asked.
“These people are animal lovers that want to give them a good home, or if they can’t keep them, find them a good home and make sure that they’re taken care of,” Katrina said.