Well, we spent a very energetic and not entirely fun weekend trying to work and in my part, learning just how painful something can be. I was in the car coming back from Nashville for all of an hour when a somewhat familiar pain started up in my lower left back. Captain Kidneystone was back, and this time he was pissed. By the time I got to Springfield I was almost doubled over with pain. I'd almost not gone home that weekend to save money, probably just as well that I did. After trying everything to aleviate the pain for several hours, I eventually succumbed the superior intelligence of my wife and just after midnight she hauled my sorry ass down to the local mini-hospital in Lebanon (see Jericho for reference, not much bigger). Well, the cat scanned me and dopped me up with morphine! Fun stuff that, I was so wasted apparently I said some things that Joy will be laughing about for years to come. Its partly my lack of resistance to that drug, and partly relief from the pain. The CAT confirmed, big ass stone in kidney and little one lodged in tube. Ouch! So I got a bottle of happy drugs and went home.
Saturday was kind of a loss, with me trying to recover and all. But Sunday we finally got out and went on our first scavenger run. We went around Springfield and tried to lay hands on every used skid that both wasn't nailed down, and was in a logical 'garbage' location. In the process we scored a couple dozen 5 gallon food grade buckets that will come in handy! Anyway, with those skids, some nails, and part of a huge tarp we had left from one of our many moves, we made an outdoor brooder. Our little quakers were starting to become little stinkers, and it was time for the move. Plus they're trying to forage real hard and we wanted to expose them to the out of doors soon. Here's a picture of our half day of back breaking effort.
Say hi to Joy in the picture; hot, sweaty, and annoyed as always in having her picture taken. You can see the gate to the duck paddock int he foreground. Between the paddock and the brooder, we spend maybe $75, and except for the $3.00 for nails, the brooder was free of from stuff we already had. The fence is about $16.00 a roll (36"x50') from Lowes, almost $12.00 cheaper than Tractor Supply (can't figure that one out). We used a few T polls, the green thing with the white top, at $4.00 each, and a few lighter yellow electric fence polls at about $1.00 each. The gate there is, you guess it, another pallet just covered in chickenwire. This is likely all temporary brooder space, so why spend any real money. The ducks live here for a few weeks while the chickens show up and take over the old (and much in need of cleaning) brooder. In a few weeks, we'll make another paddock and move the ducks into it, an the chicks will then move in here. We hope to get a few layers from ducks and chickens, so this might well be our permanent brooder half-way house. Who knows.
Here's another pic of the brooder, this one with wife and boy.
And here is the little quackers, now much bigger, checking out their new digs.
I always knew ducks were omnivorous, a lot like chickens, but I didn't know they were agressive insectavours. They actively chase and eat insects. We bought a couple little cups of meal worms, and they loved them. The area that this paddock was cut from used to be heavily overgrown with brush, and is likely swarming with bugs. They'll love it.
The funniest part (aside from me on morphine), was when Joy brought the quackers up from the garage. I didn't have my camera out but it was hilarious. She had them all (18 of them) in a ten gallon plastic tote. A bucket-o-duck. Needless to say they were compeltely freaking out and crapping all over the place. Damn, what a mess. Of course, being ducks, once the water was in there they proceeded to get it everywhere whilst they proceeded to give themselves baths. I think a small pond is going to be a must for these guys...