Abandonned bebe ducks swimmin’ in a teacup

People, The Daily Mail is reporting that an alert canoeist (is there any other kind? – Ed.) found a pair of tiny abandoned ducklings battling against waves afterbeing washed out to sea.

Now, those ducklings are being nursed back to health—IN A TEACUP OMG!

To Sender Inner David K., and photographer Richard Austin: I BOW BEFORE YE!



  1. Two lumps, please!

  2. Oh are they adorable!!! I love tea, too!

  3. Oh are they adorable!!! I love tea, too!

  4. MaggieBelle says:

    My 11 month old daughter would have a field day with this photo because everything to her is a duck.

    So,on behalf of Sarah…

    “DUCK! DUCK!”

  5. Total rule 14-ness, and almost rule 11-ness. I want to pick up the cup, bring it to my lips, and at the last second smooch the nearest duckling.

  6. R. Moore says:

    Awww, these are even tinier than my week-old babies on my vox. These look younger, and are wild. But mine are snuggly on top of being tiny! So ha!

    Rescued ducks are the best ducks 🙂

  7. R. I was thinking of you when I saw this too!
    Must be the time for rescuing bebeh duckies.
    (runs outside) awwwwww durn it!

  8. Link in my name. Bad connection making everything harder 😛

  9. Would you like lemon or cream with your duckies?

  10. Caitlin says:


    in all honesty, that looks more like one of those 22oz soup mugs… BUT STILL! 😀

  11. I miss my babies 😦 But they took to their new momma (a real duck and not a person) quite well and are very happy from what I hear.

  12. firefinch says:

    Duck soup?

  13. Lemon and a touch of honey, please! *slurp*

  14. are they like ice cubes that go to the back of the cup if you tip it up to get a drink?

  15. lovin the wave-action.
    these guys must be thumb sized!

  16. dandy_warhol says:

    please tell me that is a giant tea cup? otherwise, i think i shall faint at the sheer minisculeness of the ducklets.

  17. A tempest in a teacup.

  18. Colin Watson-Felt says:

    Totally cute, but totally photoshopped imho. The ducks and water are totally different lighting than the teacup. The caustics(water lighting/physics) don’t match the physical barriers of the cup itself.

    Still. Adorable.

  19. Mary (the first) says:

    omg it made me gasp out loud.

  20. Colin, photoshopping is not a crime.
    They are so tiny, is it perhaps egg drop soup?

  21. *

    I just swimming in the coffe…



  22. Okay, that is one of the cutest things I have ever seen! So sweet!

  23. Of course a TEAcup, we are British 🙂

  24. looks fake to me, i think this is a ‘shop job.

  25. faker than posh spice.. no waves like that could happen in a teacup.

  26. Are you F***ing kidding me?
    That is seriously redonk.

    BTW, this site is totally corrupting. Does anyone else have the immediate response, regardless of the animal, to yell: OMGPONIES!!!!1!1!1111!!!!!1!!!

  27. Kimmypage says:


    this is the sort of thing that makes me cry. (lump in throat now)..Nature is what it is, but I hate to think of this happening all the time. Lucky duckies you found there. I wish I could rescue some.
    grow well duckies!!

    kp 😉

  28. gloom raider says:

    Looks like someone took “Spot o’ tea, Ducks?” waaaaay too literally!

  29. Shandrews says:

    First time I can honestly say I gasped OMG when I saw this picture! Thanks for the wonderful picture 🙂

  30. LesbianNeoCon says:

    I dunno – that cup looks a little claustrophobic, no? How about a nice punch bowl, or something?

  31. The picture was taken by a professional press photographer. Not fake not a ‘shop. Visit his site you amateur-sherlocks…geez.

  32. Ok. This just melts my heart. Absolutely wonderful.

  33. Oh GEEZE! That is just too cute!

  34. Colin Watson-Felt:
    Natural backlight with fill-in flash. (and professional photographer)

  35. Tabitha Sotomayor-Ames says:

    Very cute either way, but seeing as how I have that *exact* mug at home.. it is not an itty teacup but one of those mondo huge latte mugs. It be stitting right in front of me right now! Lovely duckies.

  36. Wow – those guys a brand new!! And two would fit in a cuppa that size. Lucky ducks!

  37. R. Moore says:

    That’s sort of what I was thinking, Theo. I don’t see why the newspaper would make that up. My step-mom is a professional photographer and my sister is a very talented amateur, so I see photos lit like this a lot.

  38. Tabitha Sotomayor-Ames, they’d still be small though, right? I have a lot of the giant mugs… and my duckies wouldn’t fit in them (if only I’d thought to try it!).

  39. Duckilicious!

  40. WickedWendy says:

    OMG!!! That is soooo friggin’ CUTE!!!! I’ve died!

  41. Another Angela says:

    hmmm, me thinks your sender-inner may have seen this on Boing Boing first, as it was posted there earlier today.

  42. Leilani says:

    Only in England. God bless the British!

  43. I love how some people think they’re an expert at photography forensics.

    “Clearly this must be photoshopped because I’m a cynical know-it-all with a stick up my butt.”

    But seriously people, how adorable is the mohawk???

  44. Duck soup! Tasty and nutritious!

  45. As soon as the page loaded, I immediately went “Awwww!” out loud. I was reminded of the little goslings in Fly Away Home. Anyone remember that movie? Lots of cute, tiny waterfowl in it!

  46. OMG I just watched Fly Away Home a week ago! That movie is great.

  47. O
    so cute i think i’m going to cry.

    thank you, alert canoeist, for saving these little duckles!

    i want duckles in my teacup too!

  48. DUCKIES!!!

    That’s all I have to say…brain fried by cuteness, lost for witty comments. Thanks Theo for explaining about the fill-in flash though.

  49. Too Sweet!!!

  50. Raciiiiiiiiink stripes!

    “Last one to the other side is a rotten egg!”

  51. Um, Richard Austin (the photographer) is frakking awesome. Have you SEEN this shifty-eyed badger on his site? You can order prints, even.


    Holy McCrapersons.


  52. When I saw this over on I think it was AOL news (?), I just knew someone would submit it here. So cute! ^_^

  53. Rather than a cup, those guys should be kept in a beak-er.

  54. snorgler says:

    We don’t need no stinkin’ badgers! Stheriously, though, Meg, thanks for the link. His pics are indeed teh awesome!

  55. Not a glass beaker, Aubrey. It might qwack!

  56. The Honourable Gladys Anstruther says:

    Hope they don’t have a storm in their tea cup.Have you seen the doormice on dafodills on the Richard Austin site?

  57. Nothing’s going to break, Dale. You’re acting like they’re bills in a china shop.

  58. I do say! This image also needs to be added, as it lists many of the Rules of cuteness:


    2) Look helpless
    14) If a small item makes you look small~
    28) Your head looks down, but eyes look up~
    And possibly 16) Your eyes are on the same level as your nose/large forehead

    Don’t forget, there’s BEF too!!

    Great post!

  59. The wee sloshing! That makes it, for me.

  60. If you guys haven’t checked out the linked article already – do so. There’s a second heart-melting picture in there of the duo cuddling in a blanket.

    Wonder if their resuers have named them yet…

  61. squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!


    (duckies float above my head like stars from the cartoons… but these are in teacups!)

  62. tamerlane says:

    This is awesome! Ducks are inherently funny. I love their little bandit masks!

  63. I’ll have 2 lumps with lemon.

  64. Carrie Hamster Defender - Duck Raiser says:

    Just so you’se guys knows… those are merganser ducklingses.

    And they are totally adorabuhls in their cup o’water!

  65. How bout 6 lumps, disillusion? 😉

    Then it would be ALMOST as sweet as this pic!!

    Oh, the TEENINESS!!!

  66. Duckie soup! So adorable. And matchingks too! AND heads bigger than bodies!

  67. First, I LOVE CO! Thanks for the happiness pill. But the baby ducks in the teacup are not real. If you look closely at the water, it’s obviously been photoshopped in. The proportions are all wrong as well. The ducks would swim right OUT of the cup. And baby ducks are simply NOT that small. Sorry, but you’ve been had.

    [Well, OK, but only because *you* say so. And, glad you love CO. – Ed.]

  68. That’s not a teacup, dummy!

  69. “Clearly this must be photoshopped because I’m a cynical know-it-all with a stick up my butt.”

    You are my favorite person.

  70. What next?

    Ducklets in a teacup ON A TEACUP RIDE???

  71. SQUEEEEEE! Hurray for the ducky rescue!

  72. Ummmm, not quite what I had in mind when I asked for extra foam in mah latte.

  73. *shrugs*
    shhhh, I’m supposed ta be workin…but how can I wit such adorables waiting to be gasped at.

  74. Kiragirl says:

    Dunking for ducks!

  75. ThreeCatNight says:

    Darling! Is that a huge mug, or teeny duckersons?

  76. Another Angela says:

    Carrie Hamster Defender – Duck Raiser, these are so very much NOT baby mergansers. Mergansers have completely different bills than ducks. They look like mallards to me and the photo has that as a tag as well.

  77. Too much cuteness. Can’t take it!

  78. Shannon Johnson says:

    *baby ducks talking* Peep peep peep peep peep.

    [They really do that, too… – Ed.]

  79. poptartorpopart says:

    I love the way they are making waves in the cup, slosh slosh.

  80. It is very, very obvious that I need me some teeny ducklings. Yep, need ’em.

  81. enter the party pooper says:

    I hate to be the jerk here, but I hope the person that found these ducks dried them off carefully after their swim. I’ve rehabilitated ducklings, and the thing is, they don’t have the waterproof feathers that adults do. Without a mama on standby to help dry them, they can quickly become hypothermic and die. And since baby ducks, like most birds, aren’t gonna let you get anywhere near them without a fight unless they’ve been imprinted, drying them off yourself can be quite a challenge.

    (I know I’m gonna get slammed for this, but seriously, people – if you had any idea how many wild animals die because of the well-intended but totally misinformed actions of human beings, you’d be less than enthusiastic about this picture, too.)

  82. If you read the article there’s a picture of them all wrapped up in a towel, drying off. I don’t think you have anything to worry about.

  83. Gizmo is right, this is fabricated. These lil ducklingadings are to die for, though! t(^-^)t

  84. I don’t CARE. I take cuteness where I find it, even when found courtesy of Adobe. Bleah. 😛

  85. Ilona: You are *not* right. These are *not* fabricated. Please don’t just make serious accusations based on completely wild guesses, because that’s exactly what you’re doing. Richard Austin takes photos like these for a living and The Daily Mail has an enormous readership. Think about it. *Why* would these be faked? Where’s the motivation? If these turned out to be faked, the guy could very likely lose his professional reputation and livelihood. Who’d risk that over a couple of ducklings? Seriously! On top of this, it would be MUCH harder to “fake” something like this, than to actually stick two baby ducks in a really big coffee mug and take a picture! Especially if you’re already a pro photographer, with studio, gear, flash umbrellas, etc. Once you have the lighting right, it’s a few clicks and you have your pix. But try compositing something like that, or modeling it from scratch, and you’ll be at it all day. Or longer! I don’t care how good you are with digital photo-retouching or 3D-rendering software, it’s just not feasible to “fabricate” this picture.

    Also, Gizmo didn’t say these were faked; it was Colin. Get your comments straight, OK?


  86. We’re in your mugz, schwimmink up a stormkz.

  87. They’d swim right out of the cup? Look at the photo, for yog’s sake. Clearly they have. They’re churning the water like mad and splattering it all over the place.

    Photoshop, my ass. You can see the walls of the cup in the water. It is, however, an UNUSUALLY LARGE COFFEE CUP. Check the proportion of the handle to the cup! 😀

  88. I’ll have a cuppa quakers and soup please.

  89. I’ve always been rather struck by the irony of people who denounce accusations of photoshoppery based on the poster’s (assumed) lack of photographic knowledge. Pot, kettle, black, etc. Which isn’t to say anything one way or another about this particular image. As for why people would risk their professional careers on something like this, though, I would suggest doing a little web searching on a certain t-shirt “artist” who’s been making some plagar-iffic waves lately. Again, not to pass any form of judgment on this particular picture or artist. Just to answer that rhetorical question.

  90. Simple and awesomely cute little adorables
    A tea cup! Now, who would have thought of that?

    huh, hmmmm…lol

    Best Regards,

    Sajjid Manuel
    Frost & Fable Records [P]LTD http://www.musicworkx.com

  91. I remember when I was a kid. My mom got eaten my ducks in a teacup. From that day on, I vowed that I would not rest until those darn ducks were brought to justice. Then, I got some donuts and ate them. They were jelly. Then. I went home and went to sleep. I was woken by a mystical wizard named RUdolfus. He had a fancy hat. He offered me three wishes. I first wished my cat had its leg back. I then wished jama comina was there. My last wish was for a fence full of penguins and lamas. I loved those penguins until they got hit by a mketeor and all died. I cried for ten minutes, but didny give up hope. This was just the beginning. I left for my new home in alaska on that faithfull day. Never to return again, until i RETURN. The moral of the story is, Never to trust Ducks in teacups to be honest.