The trail finally ended when she waddled on to Barrasford Close in Gosforth, Newcastle upon Tyne, where her chicks suddenly stopped. And it was there, standing over another man-hole cover, that the mother remained for the next four hours until local residents heard chirping coming from down below. They in turn launched a rescue operation, removing the manhole cover and using a child's fishing net to scoop all six from the sewer one by one and reuniting them with their mother in a paddling pool.
'I went in and had breakfast and looked out again. I saw she was waddling away from a drain cover but then immediately going back and sitting down on it.
'Vicki said she thought she could hear cheeping sounds,' said Mr Elliott. 'It was fairly clear that her chicks were trapped underground.'
The sewer access point is close to the River Ouseburn, near the Three Mile Inn on the Great North Road, Gosforth - two miles away from where the ducklings were finally rescued.