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On eve of elections, ducks threatened to storm Fairbanks courthouse

Craig Medred

Thanks to the work of federal agents what might have been shaping up as an Election Day assault on the Rabinowitz Courthouse in Fairbanks has been averted. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports a vigilant Alaska State Trooper on Monday spotted a mob of ducks massing to storm the building.

Agents with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the specialists in dealing with waterfowl, were promptly summoned to the courthouse by a trooper. Migratory bird biologist Ed Malleck told the News-Miner they were "worried about the (ducks) getting into the courthouse.”

Not to fear. Malleck and his man were there. The two of them drove the ducks back toward the river. Apparently panicked by the counter-assault, the troublemakers -- mallards all -- took flight. They flew off toward the (Chena) river,” Malleck told the newspaper. “They were able to fly quite well.”

News-Miner outdoor editor Tim Mowry opined that apparently the ducks never got the word to fly south. Malleck suggested it more likely the ducks were enticed to stay in the frozen Interior by people feeding them. Mallards are as susceptible to handouts as some humans.