Thursday, September 28, 2006

Duck, Duck... GONE.

The Portland Forecaster reported in its September 6th issue that the popular crowd of ducks (and the less popular but nevertheless present geese) that resides in the Evergreen Cemetery duck pond is going to be removed permanently to a farm in Biddeford this winter due to expense, leaving those of us who visit the pond regularly to make friends with the ducky dabblers in the lurch and very unhappy.

Those of you who feel similarly may want to contact the City of Portland to inform them of your opinion!
Cemetery ducks, geese going to Biddeford farm
By Kate Bucklin
PORTLAND – The Evergreen Cemetery ducks and geese will be moved permanently to a farm in Biddeford this winter.

Although the waterfowl have lived at the pond at the rear of the cemetery for more than a decade, the city decided this year it could no longer care for the 14 geese and half-dozen ducks.

The decision, according Parks and Recreation Department Assistant Director Tom Civiello, was made for two reasons: The shelter the birds used in the winter is being torn down, along with the maintenance shed it is attached to; the shed will be replaced, but not the shelter. Also, the employee who took care of the waterfowl retired last year.

City Councilor Donna Carr said the ducks and geese will probably be moved in early or mid October, when the migratory fowl head out for the winter. The birds will be housed in a barn during the coldest months, and placed outside when spring comes, Carr said.

The farm is owned by Richard Lagarde, the city’s treasury director.

Although the geese and ducks will have winter shelter, at least one admirer of the animals is unhappy with the city’s decision to remove the waterfowl permanently from Evergreen.

“There must be a feasible solution to having them returned to Evergreen Cemetery in the spring,” said Annette Kearney. She said she was pleased the city had found adequate winter shelter for the birds.

Kearney said she plans to keep after the city in hope of getting the ducks and geese back to the pond during the warmer months.

Councilor Cheryl Leeman also said she did not like the idea of the waterfowl leaving the cemetery permanently.

“Why would they do that?” she said.

Kate Bucklin can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106 or kbucklin[at]theforecaster.net.[Source]
The great blue heron will find himself with little company if this all goes through and the ducks are not returned in the spring. PHOTO by Michelle Souliere.
Great Blue Heron resting

3 comments:

Jack Zall said...

Having just moved to Deering, I can say with some certainty that this is an evil bait-and-switch conspiracy against me by the city of Portland. Bastards.

Michelle said...

Dear Jack--
Maybe if you pretend to leave, then sneak in around through the back, they'll put the ducks back.

The thought that this might work amuses me mightily! If only the City of Portland's Public Works had the same sense of humor I did.

Jack Zall said...

Ah, but then the ducks would see me coming and quack warnings to the head conspirators and it would all be for naught. Damned collaborators.