Fowl play? Giant rubber duck drowns in Hong Kong
May 15, 2013 -- Updated 1242 GMT (2042 HKT)
Bad night: Rubber duck recreates a scene more familiar in Hong Kong's Lan Kwai Fong or Wan Chai bar areas.
'Rubber duck' going....
Talk of the town
Giant inflatable duck drowns
- Duck deflated overnight Tuesday
- Rubber duck is planned to be on show until June 9
- Duck had captivated Hong Kong
(CNN) -- Hong Kong's favorite new resident, a giant inflatable duck, took a turn for the worse on Wednesday, looking less like an oversized lovable plaything and more like an unappetizing fried egg on the water.
The 16.5-meter (54 feet) inflatable sculpture mysteriously lost its mojo overnight, deflated and bobbed lifelessly in Victoria Harbour.
Organizers called an urgent duck crisis meeting early Wednesday and didn't immediately respond to questions about the misfortunes of the duck or whether the deflation was part of regular maintenance, as reported in some local media. A tweet did appear however on the official Harbour City Twitter account, saying: "The Rubber Duck needs to freshen up. Stay tuned for its return."
Much later in the day, organizers responded and said it was a planned deflation. Why it took so long to clarify and why officials had to get senior management approval to make such a statement seems a little odd and naturally, this got Hong Konger's busy with the popular pastime of gossiping.
Deflated duck a victim of fowl play?
Not your everyday sight in Hong Kong's Victoria Harbour. A giant 16.5 meter (54 feet) inflatable duck, creatively called 'Rubber Duck' sails into town on Thursday.
Gallery: Floating into Hong Kong
Quacking up over art display
The duck has captivated Hong Kong since its arrival earlier this month and news of the duck's deflation was splashed across Hong Kong media and social networks with many ruminating as to the duck's health.
Called "Rubber Duck," it's the product of Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman. After going on show on May 2, it was to be on display until June 9.
The artist told CNN earlier this month the duck was built locally so it would be easier to fix should there be any duck drama.
Hong Kong is the latest port of call for the duck. It's previously taken up temporary residence in cities all over the world, including Osaka, Sydney, Sao Paolo and Amsterdam.
The duck hasn't always enjoyed plain sailing. In 2009 during a port call in Belgium, it was stabbed 42 times by a vandal.
"We don't know why the person did it," Hofman said. "But in the Middle Ages there was a moment when they ruined all the sculptures in Europe. We call it a "sculpture storm." The museum that bought the work spoke about 'Sculpture Stormers' that would hit the work - and kill it."
"But [the incident] brought the people of that town together. The community had a stake out at night and protected it and even the police looked after it. It shows that this piece of art means a lot to people in the vicinity of this work."
The duck team also closely monitor the weather after the duck copped some nasty treatment during a storm in Belgium.
"There is a crew that has wind speed meters and they follow what the weather does," Hofman said. "They monitor by computer and monitor the weather so they can react in advance because we don't want to cry if it gets ripped up."
For more details on the duck during cheerier times read our earlier report: Hong Kong crazy for giant duck
Freelancer Kate Whitehead contributed to this story.
Part of complete coverage on
September 18, 2014 -- Updated 1200 GMT (2000 HKT)
A foreign language can be the best aphrodisiac, so we traveled the world in search of the hottest accents.
September 19, 2014 -- Updated 0735 GMT (1535 HKT)
Hidden from the rest of the world for decades, Myanmar's Lethwei boxing is experiencing a revival globally.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1117 GMT (1917 HKT)
This aging cargo work whale makes more than 60 flights each week, carrying parts for all of the Airbus programs.
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1132 GMT (1932 HKT)
Vikings, vicious politics and vindaloo curries -- Scotland isn't all tartan and bagpipes.
September 15, 2014 -- Updated 0026 GMT (0826 HKT)
Former brothels, public toilets and war bunkers now provide eccentric watering holes for those willing to drink deep.
September 18, 2014 -- Updated 0304 GMT (1104 HKT)
Joburg is trendy, Cape Town is glamorous, but Durban has style -- and a restaurant inside a shark tank.
September 12, 2014 -- Updated 0756 GMT (1556 HKT)
Former Tirana stronghold of a totalitarian leader now home to a pulsing clubs and bar scene.
September 12, 2014 -- Updated 0338 GMT (1138 HKT)
Whether filled with electric blue sulfur flames or hissing lava, these mega mountains offer incredible vistas.
September 10, 2014 -- Updated 0040 GMT (0840 HKT)
This once-a-year luxury cruise visits untouched islands and never-snorkeled reefs.
September 9, 2014 -- Updated 1305 GMT (2105 HKT)
Peter J. Goutiere was just shy of 30 years old when he piloted a Douglas C-47 from Miami to Kolkata, India.
September 1, 2014 -- Updated 2247 GMT (0647 HKT)
Breathtaking scenery, championship design -- many of the courses dropped into the Canadian Rockies are among the most memorable in the world.
September 2, 2014 -- Updated 1306 GMT (2106 HKT)
Why Florentijn Hofman is sending a giant beast into London's River Thames.
September 2, 2014 -- Updated 1607 GMT (0007 HKT)
Scrap all those other bucket lists you've been compiling and start saving -- these memorable-for-a-lifetime trips don't come cheap, or easy.
September 6, 2014 -- Updated 0042 GMT (0842 HKT)
A squabble over a device that limits how far a seat can recline has brought inflight etiquette into the spotlight again.
August 29, 2014 -- Updated 1023 GMT (1823 HKT)
Thirst for victory competes with thirst for booze in event where competitors raise their glasses long before they cross the finish line.
Today's five most popular stories