Scottsdale rides to the rescue of waterfowl - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

Scottsdale rides to the rescue of waterfowl

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Posted: Wednesday, June 22, 2005 6:13 am | Updated: 9:03 am, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

City officials Tuesday delivered on a promise made a day earlier to build ramps to give ducklings and goslings access to and from an island sanctuary at Chaparral Park.

Prompted by a Tribune story Tuesday that reported the drowning of 14 waterfowl nestlings in Chaparral Lake over the last month, Scottsdale Parks and Grounds manager Rose Williams and a work crew headed to the area at Chaparral and Hayden roads.

There, Williams encountered Lenny Beard, a resident and animal welfare advocate who alerted the Tribune to the problem. He was concerned because more nests are on the island.

Crews built 10 ramps, so the small birds can return to the island once they’ve gone into the water for food.

"We knew there was an issue," Williams said. "We thought about using wood planks or river rock, but Mr. Beard made the suggestion of flagstone. That’s what we used, so access shouldn’t be a problem."

The problem occurred during renovation in November. A new wall around the island was too high for nestlings to climb after entering the water. Williams said crews built four ramps on the east side of the island and six on the west.

Beard was elated city officials reacted quickly, but believes they should have done something when he first informed them of the problem five weeks ago. "I shouldn’t have had to go to the Tribune to get the job done," Beard said.

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