- Associated Press - Friday, June 26, 2015

MARSHFIELD, Wis. (AP) - Seven baby ducks have been reunited with their mother after being rescued by workers who discovered that the animals had fallen into a drain pipe outside a finance company in Marshfield.

Mark Derfus, Chris Lotzer, and Peter Hannan, all of whom work at United FCS, got creative in order to safely remove the ducklings from the deep, narrow pipe at the company’s building. After discovering the ducklings stuck about six feet below ground level in the pipe, the workers purchased a shop vac so they could suction them out.

“Our boss told us to do what we needed to get them out, so we came up with the idea of using a vacuum to get them,” Hannan said.

The men were careful to make sure that the vacuum could pick up the ducklings without causing them harm, News-Herald Media (http://mnhne.ws/1djqrew ) reported.

“We reduced the size of the tube down to one inch so that the ducks wouldn’t get stuck in the tube or get sucked in the vacuum bag,” Hannan said. “I pulled them up with the vacuum while Mark held the flashlight so we could see in the drain. Once we heard a ‘thump’ we would gently pull the hose up, and Chris and a couple others gently helped take each duckling off the hose.”

The rescuers also provided updates to fellow employees and customers who were concerned about the ducklings.

“The ladies in the office were worried about their safety,” Lotzer said. “Every time we got one of the ducklings out, I went back into the office to let everyone know. They were all pretty happy to learn that all the ducklings made it out OK.”

The rescue effort took about 45 minutes, and although the ducklings seemed to be a bit exhausted after the rescue, all of them were fine, Hannan said.

“One of the little guys on the bottom looked a little lethargic, but once we put him in the cage with the rest of them, they all seemed much happier,” he said.

Animal control officials, who later took the ducklings and their mother to a pond in Wildwood Park, told the men that their method of rescuing the ducks with the shop vac as the right move.

“They told us that using the vacuum was really the only way we could have gotten the ducklings out,” Derfus said. “That’s the same thing they would have done.”

Once the ducklings were safe and sound, covers were placed over the building’s drain pipes to prevent similar issues from happening in the future.

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Information from: News-Herald Media, http://www.marshfieldnewsherald.com

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