Veterinarians say they were forced to euthanize a pair of newborn ducklings after it became apparent they would not recover from serious injuries.
The ducklings were hurt while swimming with their family at a pond in Boulder earlier this month. The Boulder Police Department's Animal Control Unit had been investigating after witnesses reported seeing 12 and 13-year-old boys throwing rocks at the duck family, but closed their investigation this week after a witness said he also saw Canadian geese pecking at the ducklings.
The witness told officers in an interview "that he did not actually witness children throwing rocks at the ducklings, but saw kids in the area throwing rocks into the pond. He surmised that the children caused the injuries to the ducklings," the police department said in a statement. The police department said that due to the inconsistency of witness statements, they were dropping the criminal investigation.
It remains unclear how the ducklings were injured, but veterinarians said the injuries were too severe for them to survive.
“It’s not humane to keep an animal alive just because you can,” Jenny Bryant with the Greenwood Wildlife Rehabilitation Center told sister station KCNC.
Caretakers believe the ducklings sustained head injuries, and say the ducklings were blind and unable to stand up straight.