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Pool duck

As lifeguards complete CPR training in the background, a drake mallard duck goes for a swim at the Last Chance Splash Pool on Wednesday.

After sitting in the shade of the diving board, a drake mallard duck took a bath in Helena's city pool Wednesday. He has followed the same routine almost every day of spring for the last few years, along with a hen mallard.

According to Rod Feistner with the city of Helena, the pair of ducks usually show up at Last Chance Splash Pool in late spring and stick around until their ducklings hatch, which usually coincides with the opening week of the pool.

Then the ducks disappear. To where, he does not know. 

Once the ducks have laid their eggs, Feistner said, he never sees them together in the pool. He assumes that is because one always needs to sit on the nest.

On more than one occasion, Feistner has seen the ducks waddle into the pool office to see what's going on. A couple of years ago, the pair had their nest in a shrub right next to the front door. 

"They don't stick around too long," Feistner said. "But they are fun to have around."

The pool opens for the season on Monday, June 17, and will operate through Aug. 25.

On weekdays, lap swim starts at 9:30 a.m., the water park opens at 12:15 p.m. and the 50-meter pool and diving tank opens at 1 p.m. The pool closes at 7 p.m. every weekday.

On weekends, all areas of the pool are open from 1-5 p.m.

The pool is located at 1203 North Last Chance Gulch and can be reached at 447-1559. 

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Thom Bridge can be reached at Thom.bridge@helenair.com

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Photo editor at The Independent Record

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