MOUNT SINAI, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — The head of the Suffolk County SPCA is proud of his daughter-in-law for helping him rescue nine ducklings from a storm drain on Long Island.

Cara Gross happened to be with her father-in-law, Suffolk County SPCA Chief Roy Gross, in Mount Sinai when they received a call about the trapped ducklings.

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The duo went to the Hamlet at Willow Creek, where the mother duck was frantically running back and forth on the street.

“Looking down into the storm drain, I couldn’t see anything at that point, but I could hear the ducklings quacking away,” Roy Gross said. “There was no way of getting to them.”

He said his daughter-in-law was the only person on the scene small enough to fit into the drain and she jumped right into action.

“I said, ‘I don’t know about you going in there in that muck’ and I turned around and there she is down there with her good clothes on,” he said. “All she wanted to do was get those ducklings out of there. As far as I’m concerned, she is a hero.”

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Cara Gross said being a mother of three she had to help.

“My instincts just kicked in and I just wanted to get in there and get those babies out and get them back to their mommy,” she said. “I feel like I did as any mother, any animal lover, any good person would do.”

The nine ducklings were happily reunited with their mother.

Roy Gross said the ducklings wouldn’t have made it if his daughter-in-law hadn’t been there to help.

“They would’ve died in there,” he said. “I don’t know if we would’ve gotten them all out without my daughter-in-law being there.”

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One of the ducklings was taken to an animal hospital, where it is being monitored. The rest returned to the lake with their mother.