The Yellow Duckmarine and how it became Liverpool’s famous bird in the 1990s.
Since its construction in 1911, the Liver Building’s two iconic birds have dominated the city’s emblem.
However, for most of the early 2000s, the humble duck competed with the majestic, iron-clad cormorants for the title of bird that defined Liverpool’s cityscape.
From 2001 until 2013, Liverpool was home to the Yellow Duckmarine amphibious tours, whose vivid yellow fisherman’s mac plume gleamed on the streets and in the docks.
A forgotten Mersey sailor whose WWII broadcast boosted morale.
On a day excursion to town, the Duckmarine tours would often be seen weaving around the city streets or theatrically diving into the dock waters as it transformed into a waterbound craft.
A trip on the ‘Duck,’ as it was called, gave visitors and locals alike a whistle-stop tour of the city center sites, including the Salt House, Wapping, Queens, and Coburg Docks, as well as a prime view of the Albert Dock.
Although the Ducks’ well-known tours began in 2001, the Ducks’ history dates back far further than that.
The Ducks, like the Royal Daffodil and Royal Iris Mersey ferries that served as landing craft for a daring mission during WWI, earned their stripes in the military before going on to enjoy their time as a leisure cruiser.
Built between 1942 and 1945, the DUKWS, as they were known in the military, began life as an amphibious landing boat utilized by allied troops in the latter years of WWII and beyond.
DUKWS remained to serve in the military until the 1970s, and were critical to operations such as the D-Day landing of 1944 for their ability to transport men and supplies ashore when there was no port.
Four ex-military DUKWS were upgraded and equipped in 2001, and the Yellow Duckmarine fleet began patrolling the city’s streets and waterways.
The Yellow Duckmarines, also called as “Wacker Quacker” and numbered 1,2,3, and 4, became a tourist attraction that could be seen rain or shine all throughout the city.
The tours were well-known for their. “The summary has come to an end.”