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What happens when chicks try to swim?

As a retired infant teacher I still buy The TES, which I read with great interest. I like to have information to share with my own children and grandchildren.

But the Big Picture (April 6) of the mother duck with chicks made me uneasy. I was particularly puzzled by Ted Wragg's teaching tips - that the picture can be the starting point for dealing with such sensitive issues as fostering and adoption.

Can you please explain to me why no reference is made to th danger for the partridge chicks - what happens when the mother duck decides it is time to teach her babies to swim? Even if she just wants to swim herself and they, having "imprinted" on her, want to follow. How is that providing a good model for safe parenting? Is the duck to be forcibly kept away from water? Surely it would have been possible to have a picture of a duck with chicks of another web-footed species.

Georgina Langdon, Cambuslang, Glasgow


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