A family of ducks has received a special police escort this week in what has become an annual springtime ritual in a Canadian town.
Video footage posted by local wetlands conservation group Ducks Unlimited Atlantic shows police halting oncoming traffic in Charlottetown — the capital of the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island — to help the duck mother, named Lucy, and her ducklings cross the road on University Avenue.
Video shows onlookers watching the ducky scene, with one even picking up a straggler that wobbled and stopped in the road, before placing it back with its family on the other side.
The group posted that Lucy and her family crossed the road into the restored Ducks Unlimited Canada wetland she uses each year.\
The staff at the nearby Atlantic Superstore has also monitored local ducks for the past five or six years, according to one staff member, who wished to remain anonymous.
"They come back every year and the staff took to it...watching each year to make sure they are safe," he said.
Ducks are a vibrant part of the Prince Edward Island culture, not only for interested onlookers, but also to positively impact the ecosystem of the wetlands, which are essential for healthy waterways, according to a statement on the Ducks Unlimited Canada website.
"The natural world is complex. It works best when it contains a diverse system of fish and wildlife," the statement reads. "Waterfowl contribute to this system in many ways — as inhabitants, predators and prey. We value wildlife as an essential part of the Canadian experience."