Santa Margalida's mayor Joan Monjo insisted yesterday that real ducks need to be restored to the annual "release" for the Assumption fiestas' swim. "Some day live ducks will be thrown again," he said. "It is an outrage that an underwater outflow can be built that spills dirty water into the sea, but four ducks cannot be released. Since they were banned, the event has lost its appeal."
The ban on real ducks was introduced in 2007 but only with reluctance on the part of the town hall. It had defied Balearic animal-protection legislation and allowed the ducks to continue to feature. When it was finally faced with legal action, it complied. In that year and over the next three years, real ducks were smuggled in and released. A resident of Can Picafort agreed with the mayor. "It's not the same."
The location for yesterday's swim had to be switched from the normal place because of sea conditions. Rather than the dive from in front of the Mar y Paz Hotel, there was a stroll into the sea at the small beach by the marina. Some 2,000 rubber ducks were released, and 170 prizes were awarded.