December 31, 2022

Out for a duck at Bundoora Centre

For weeks, all that staff at Bundoora Centre could talk about was, “Have you seen the ducklings today? Are there still nine?”.

Kelly Pinto, Spiritual Care Practitioner and Duck Watcher first came across them on a hot summer’s day. “I found the ducks seeking shelter in two groups. Half the flock was sitting under a car. The other half were hiding behind some shrubbery, so as not to be seen. Together they slumbered in the shade as a new family, claiming Bundoora as their home and making the most of raising their young.”

Nicky Tully, Clinical Coordinator/ Duck Watcher said . “We watched the ducklings grow their adult feathers as they quickly grew in size. We observed the parents developing their life skills but appeared to be missing road sense as part of their curriculum! Lucky there are road signs near the campus to warn of the duck crossings.”

She added, “Staff watched in delight as nine ducklings grew into adult ducks over six short weeks. The joy of watching these ducklings created chatter around the corridors with staff wondering if the ducklings were safe and well. They were seen taking pictures of the family and dodging a charging hissing protective parent.”

Barbara Hayes, Clinical Lead-Advance Care Planning/Associate Duck Watcher said, “I was delighted to see that the parents were able to successfully raise all nine ducklings.  I noticed that the Dad was very vigilant and kept an eye out for danger.  The ducks have loved the wet weather this year.  When we needed to wade through parts of the carpark, after heavy rain, the ducks were there as well looking very excited by all the water.”

“Security staff also did their bit to protect the ducklings and, on occasions, could be seen gently herding the ducklings and their parents back towards the pond for safety.  Watching the ducks and ducklings each year at Bundoora is good for the soul.”

Nicky was quick to agree, “It brought us together through the colder days of winter, bringing joy to our hearts as we watched nature grow around us.”