I finally got the waterproof roof affixed this weekend. It, like everything in the experiment, took way longer than I thought it would. The screws I got to hold the roofing to the frame were screws in one sense, but not in the sense that you could put them in with a screwdriver, and my ratchet it broken, so I had to do it with a wrench, which kind of sucked. Then, once fixed it to the frame, and propped it up for run-off, it appears I underestimated the rigidity of the materials.
So, you can see the edges drooping, which makes the whole thing look like a sad tugboat to me. I made little wings that now hold it up.
Whether or not any of this holds up under snow remains to be seen. Maybe it won’t snow at all, like last year. Or maybe it will snow as much as the year before that, and the whole thing will collapse, and the chickens will have to live in an igloo.
As you can also see, I finished the brick and pebble moat around the whole thing. This is to hold down the hardware cloth, and keep things from burrowing under. It also looks much nicer.
I had been feeding them using a cat feeder (one of the ones you fill up and more food falls down as they eat), but they kept knocking it over, so I ended up buying one that would hang. I could have made one out of a bucket, but I think that would be much bigger than I need, and might not have fit under the coop. That’s where it needs to go to keep out of the rain.
As you can see, they are freaked out by it. This is highly unusual. They are usually so easy going. They got used to it very quickly, since they like food.
So far, my favorite part of the day is opening the coop door in the morning. They all fight to be the first one out, and it’s all flapping and clucking and falling off the stairs. If you’re familiar with the story The Poky Little Puppy, you’ll know the terms, roly-poly, pell-mell, and tumble bumble. It’s not just puppies who do this.