SIX ducklings have been rescued by the RSPCA after getting stuck in Blackburn sewage water.

Staff at the Blackburn and Darwen Waste Water treatment plant, off the M65, came across the ducklings scurrying around a storm tank.

Workers were hoping the ducklings and their mother would plot their own escape route - but it appeared mother duck took flight, leaving her babies stuck in water full of human waste.

Staff reported the matter to the RSPCA and inspector Danni Jennings was sent to the scene on Friday 16 July.

Miss Jennings said of the incident: "It was quite a challenge as the ducklings were very frightened and were really giving us the runaround.

"It was also quite a smelly situation on such a hot day but I was determined to help them because there was no way they could have got out themselves. They were too young to fly from the ground.

Lancashire Telegraph: UGLY: The ducklings got themselves into a smelly situation, but the RSPCA were on hand to rescueUGLY: The ducklings got themselves into a smelly situation, but the RSPCA were on hand to rescue

"With some great team work, a staff member at the plant managed to encourage them onto the concrete area and then with the help of others I was able to get them all."

The ducklings were confined to the overflow sewage area at the United Utilities plant which had high walls and so were unable to get free.

Half of the surface area was covered in water and human waste while another part was concrete.

Staff at the plant teamed up with Danni to help get the ducklings from the unpleasant situation they had landed themselves in.

One was able to encourage them from the sewage water onto the concrete area and workers then formed a human shield to stop the ducklings escaping back into the sewage, meaning Miss Jennings was able to safely capture them all in a net.

The ducklings were checked over and apart from being somewhat unclean, all appeared to be in good health.

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Miss Jennings then took them to a nearby private pond, where they were keen to jump straight into the refreshing water.

She added: "When I took them to the pond to let them free they all quickly ran off - which was great to see.

"I went to check on them this week and they seem to be doing really well - although they appear quite shy and hide in the reeds."

Robert Jackson, process controller for United Utilities, said: "When we saw the predicament the ducklings were in, we called the RSPCA straight away.

"Our team were happy to help Danni with the rescue and we are made up to hear that the ducklings are all doing well back in the wild."