An indestructible duck hit by a car at almost 100kmh survived with bruises after getting stuck inside the vehicle's grill for a day.
Wellington man Phillip Johnson was driving on State Highway 1 near Levin on Wednesday when two ducks waddled onto the road.
He braked to avoid the pair, but heard a thump and thought he had clipped one.
"I looked in the rear view mirror and it was walking. I thought the other one had flown away."
Mr Johnson forgot about the incident till the next day, when he thought he should check the car for damage.
"I saw some feathers, then I saw the whole duck was still there, and it was still alive. I was surprised more than anything, then concerned about how badly was it damaged."
The duck proved quite unflappable however.
"It was just sitting there looking at me the way ducks do. It was quite curious. It looked like the grill had bent back and it had gone straight in."
Mr Johnson left the duck where it was, and drove to his local vet Allan Probert.
"He said he had never seen anything like it."
The two men plus duck then drove to a local panel beater.
They bent back the grill to extract the female bird.
"It got a bit agitated so we let it go for a bit. It went straight to a puddle, I think it was pretty thirsty."
Mr Probert said the duck had bruising and a damaged wing.
It was expected to make a full recovery.
"It's one of the most unusual cases I have come across.''
He planned to release the duck at Zealandia when it was better.
- © Fairfax NZ News