July 22, 2015
A Floating Duck House on the Pond
The ducks are now spending their entire day down on or near the pond. When we let them out in the morning, they waddle down the hill to the water, and they usually don't come back up until after dark. We have been thinking a lot about how we can make our animals fairly independent so that they can go a couple days without us if we want to leave for the weekend. Josh has the chicken coop mostly automated but those darn ducks still need to be let in and out. We have been wondering if there was a way to keep them down by the pond, kicking them out of the chicken run for good. I saw a floating duck house online and showed it to my super handy husband, who immediately whipped up a deck to float the house we already made on. Today we launched it out on the water but so far the ducks are staying pretty far away from it. It's hard to see but in the picture below, they are in the middle of the pond, by the cattails and the house is on the edge, near the willow tree...
We tried to put food on the deck to lure them in, but they didn't even get close enough to see the food. Ducks don't seem to have the natural curiosity that chickens do. It takes them a LONG time to get used to new things. So, unless we come up with some other ideas, I guess we will just leave it out there and hope they figure it out. The goal will be for them to get comfortable with the house and go there instead of the run at night. Eventually our plan is to push it out in the middle of the pond so the water can act as a natural predator barrier. For now, though, I'm guessing those ducks will be back up in the run tonight.