No fowl play in disappearance of ducks from St. Michael School

Children release their ducks for the 2018 launch at the Memorial Gardens. (Peter Lozinski/Daily Herald)

Ducks are roaming free in the Memorial Gardens after they were originally suspected to be stolen from St. Michael Community School.

The ducks disappeared less than a week before the annual release taking place on Thursday.

Schools and daycares in Prince Albert and surrounding areas have children take care of the ducks from birth. About a month later when the birds are ready to live independently, the kids release them in the Memorial Gardens cemetery.

A Monday news release from the Prince Albert Police Service (PAPS) gave a short description of what they originally thought was a theft—on Saturday night, someone broke into a building on the 1600 block of 17th Street West. A broken off faucet in the courtyard caused flooding in the area.

The Memorial Gardens’ Don Cody delivered a happy ending to the story.

He said the doors of St. Michael Community School were left open after the break-in and the ducks wandered out.

When a good samaritan noticed them on the school grounds, they released them in the Memorial Gardens themselves.

Cody’s disappointment was turned into relief.

“(The event) means a lot to us,” he said, and to the kids knowing they get attached to the birds in the month they spend raising them.

“It teaches young people something about life and how you grow,” he said. “It just doesn’t make it quite as spooky and scary as people think it is coming to a cemetery.”

Other schools participating include Spruce Home School, Birch Hills School and Vincent Massey Community School, as well as daycares such as Tiny Tot Child Care Centre.

“We enjoy having young people come to visit, and we do it on the basis of this,” added Cody.

The duck launch is set to take place at noon.

Cody said everyone is welcome to come watch the release and enjoy a hotdog.