One City’s Duck Rescue Prompts Questions about Tamarac’s Policy

A mother duck and her ducklings from another rescue in 2013.


By Jill Fox

After one resident praised the Coral Springs Humane Unit for their rescue efforts in saving a trapped duckling, another argued that she was unimpressed with the Tamarac Fire Department in a similar situation.

Yenny Rodriguez of Coral Springs shared a video of a successful duckling rescue from a storm drain on the Facebook page of Coral Springs Talk. After seeing the post, Tamarac resident Donna Russo said she had been in a similar situation.

The Tamarac Fire truck that was called out to rescue ducklings – but did not lift the stormwater grates.

Last month, Russo said she called the Tamarac Fire Department after noticing three ducklings trapped in a storm drain in front of her home.

“The firemen came out, looked at the ducklings, said they couldn’t do anything and just left them,” she said.

Russo looked the next day and saw the ducklings were dead, floating in the water.

They knew what to call was about and still came and left, she said.

“Why would they come if they knew they weren’t gonna do anything? It would have taken them less than 20 minutes to lift the grate and scoop them out. I know plenty of other cities that do this with no problem. You even see it on the news.”

Elise Boston, spokesperson for Tamarac Fire Rescue, said she couldn’t speak to the specifics of the situation but could say that, as a rule, Tamarac Fire Rescue does what they can to rescue stranded ducks.

She said one ongoing issue is the difficulty in removing stormwater grates because they are quite heavy and removing one for an attempted duck rescue has resulted in injury to staff.

”We are awaiting delivery of a grate lifting device which we’ll test and if we find that it resolves the issue, will provide for each fire station.”

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Jill Fox
Jill Fox is an Emmy Award-winning writer and producer. She is currently a Senior Account Director at Lon Haber & Co., a leading full-service public relations firm. Fox worked at NBC Miami for eight years after graduating from the University of Miami. She lives in Parkland with her husband, Brian and two children.