See These High School Students Save Ducklings

When young people see animals who need help, they want to take action but sometimes don’t know what to do. But the students from the Southwest High School Animal Rights Club in Minneapolis figured it out—they saw a need and got organized!

A mother duck had flown into the school courtyard to lay her eggs. It was a safe place and free from predators. There was only one problem—there was no way out if you couldn’t fly. So once the ducklings hatched, the family was stranded. Luckily, their friends in the Animal Rights Club were having their final meeting of the school year and were ready to spring into action to help.

They enlisted the assistance of more compassionate friends and used two large pieces of cardboard to guide the birds out of the courtyard, through the hallways, down the stairs, and out into the city.


The students and their teacher ushered the mama duck with all her ducklings eight blocks to Lake Harriet. On they went, along the grassy edge of the sidewalks, occasionally blocking traffic and steering the birds away from storm drains. It took them 35 minutes to get there, but these heroes never gave up.

Arriving at the lake, the mama duck led her little ones to the edge of a concrete embankment, jumped into the water, and called to her babies above to join her. Instinctively trusting their mother in this new adventure, the ducklings hopped into the lake one by one and started swimming. The students waved goodbye to the family, knowing that they’d made the ducklings’ start in life a lot easier.


These heroic friends to waterfowl are leading their generation in making the world a kinder place. Their teacher summed up the situation best as “[b]eautiful humans helping beautiful animals.”

TeachKind is recognizing these kind-hearted students and their teacher for setting a compassionate example by coming to the aid of this stranded duck family.

You can be a hero for animals just by doing simple things like not going to any circus, aquarium, or roadside zoo that exploits animals. Spay or neuter your cats and dogs, adopt from shelters instead of buying animals from a pet store or breeder, and always report abuse and neglect whenever you see it.

Ducks can feel pain and emotions—just as our dogs and cats do and just as humans do. They deserve the same consideration and compassion that the animals we love and share our homes with deserve.

Because of rapid urban and rural development and agricultural land use in the U.S., wild animals are forced to live in closer proximity to humans. Although they prefer natural, undisturbed areas, some have no choice but to seek food and shelter in buildings, parks, and even downtown areas.

These students are a shining example for all of us of how to share the world with other living beings.

Share this story with your students and colleagues to inspire them to take action for animals.

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