• Jenny Dupre

Well... it's winter...

Remember back in May when I had put off building the duck run for so long that I had to throw it together all slapdash because my ducklings kept breaking out of their enclosure and pooping all over my guest room? Well...This is a similar story...

The thought of figuring out how to build a pitched roof on my duck run back when I was trying to design the structure seemed so daunting. The whole thing was daunting, but the idea of figuring out how to add a roof on top of figuring out how to build it in the first place was just too much. So we left the roof off and said we'd add it later - before winter. This was a terrible idea for so many reasons, the worst being that for most of the summer and fall, their run has been a soggy, poop-mud nightmare. It's really gross.

Basically every weekend for the last two months I've said "we really need to figure out the roof situation." Two weekends ago, when it was a balmy 65 degrees, we even went to Home Depot hoping that we could just figure out how to build a pitched roof on the fly. I'm not going to go into details, but that ended with us leaving, in silence, with no plan or supplies. The tension was palpable. Instead Marcel raked the yard and let the ducks play in the leaf piles which, let's be honest, was so much better than building anything.

The good news was that I had an epiphany in my sleep (weird, right?) and realized that neither Marcel's plan nor my plan was wrong, but that we needed to combine them to make the roof work. I woke up all "EUREKA!" So this weekend was going to be the weekend, even though it's only going to be 40 degrees. I did this to myself, and what needs to be done, needs to be done.

Then I learned that we are supposed to get 5-7 inches of now tonight and that plan went straight out the window. This morning we figured out how to winterize the whole run with just stuff we had in our shed (thank goodness we're hoarders?)

We were just planning on putting a tarp over the top to keep the bulk of the snow out until the weekend, and then we found another tarp and decided to put it over one of the sides, and then we said heck 'em and figured this was as good a plan as any (not technically correct because the roof that I have planned out is going to be super nice once I do get around to putting it on. In the spring.)

We've got a little work left to do but we ran out of time and supplies. I need to get another tarp to put on the side between the run and the shed, and Marcel is going to bring his drill home from work so we can secure the fence panels to the frame with screws instead of having them wonkily tied with cord, and we're going to add one piece of plywood to the front where there's the big gap, but all in all I'm pretty proud of our work. Plus, we really, really look like the Clampetts now.

Ducks are notoriously freaked out by change. I was a little bit concerned that they'd have a meltdown about going inside their new and improved run, and while they definitely didn't want to go in at first, I think it had more to do with them wanting to stay outside than an issue with the changes. Once we got them in there, they were happily poking their bills through the hardware mesh trying to eat the spiders on the fence panels (which were spider city. YUCK!)

#pets #firsttime #ducks #DIY #building

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