Rubber Duckie armada invades UK

June 28, 2007

“Rubber Duckie, you’re the one. You make being lost at sea for eight years so much fun.”
clipped from


A flotilla of plastic ducks is heading for Britain’s beaches, according to an
American oceanographer.

For the past 15 years Curtis Ebbesmeyer has been tracking nearly 30,000
plastic bath toys that were released into the Pacific Ocean when a container
was washed off a cargo ship.

Any beachcomber who finds one of the ducks will be able to claim a $100 (50)
reward from the toys’ American distributor, First Years Inc.

Some of the ducks, known as Friendly Floatees, are expected to reach Britain
after a journey of nearly 17,000 miles

The ducks began life in a Chinese factory and were being shipped to the US
from Hong Kong when three 40ft containers fell into the Pacific during a
storm on January 29, 1992. Two thirds of them floated south through the
tropics, landing months later on the shores of Indonesia, Australia and
South America. But 10,000 headed north and by the end of the year were off
Alaska and heading back westwards.
By now the ducks had
been bleached white by the sun and sea water.
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