Monday, January 23, 2012

Second Best Friend

Teaching my chickens to swim: Things I get to do today.  That's going to be a tough one, I'm afraid.  They don't even like showers let alone plunging into swimmable water.  This would be just a precautionary measure:  Bob Dylan, master of song, sings urgently over the last week, "If it keeps on raining, the levee's gonna break."

Plumbers' tape secured with nylon zip ties
With obstacles as big as catching the girls for regular lessons, I'm going to forego the challenge and focus on prevention.  Around the hen pen the greater concern would be that the one of the intense and sudden showers would wash the feathered females into the raging current of the drainage ditch.

A more plausible course of action is to create some shelter outside where the torrents cannot touch my girls.  The Giant Sequoia next to the coop is perfect for holding the corners of a brown tarp. Ladder, tarp, fasteners--I need all that. Further consideration says that the fasteners need to be squirrel-resistant since there is a record of these rodents nipping down light strings, prayer flags and clothes lines.  I plan with "not chewable" in mind--metal plumbers' tape and nylon zip ties (I'm praying for their hardest qualities).  The time I spend in the bucketing rain should be a minimum if I'm not planning to recertify my own swimming credentials.  Zip ties are my ally.

Shelter from the storm

With all four corners of the tarp secured to create an awning, the ground beneath becomes a space free from the puddling drops from the tree.  Couldn't have used the stapler for this job.  Any other fastener would have been troublesome at best as the rain ran down my arms through the up-turned cuffs.  I have such good friends!

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