Does it sound strange that we added roosts to the duck coop? It actually isn’t – Muscovies are tree ducks and like to roost. In fact, we’ve previously found ducks in the chicken coop, happily perched on a roost along with the hens. Since it was time to add the nest boxes to the coop, we also created a couple of roosting areas.
The interior of the duck coop we built this summer was basically just a big open space. When the older ducks were laying last year, we had the nest boxes lined up against one of the walls; we used the same location for the nest boxes again because it allows us relatively easy access through the large front doors, but knew from last year that we needed to protect the tops of the nest boxes from poop barrages. To that end, we constructed a platform over the nest boxes so that the ducks could perch up there and we could scrape off the inevitable poop, just like we do in the chicken coop.
We also added a roost along the adjoining wall, intended mainly for ducks to be able to get away from the drakes. Drakes are much larger and heavier and probably won’t even try to get up on the roost. For those who choose not to hop up on the platform or the roost, there’s still plenty of floor space for socializing and sleeping.
When we ushered the ducks into the coop last night, they were surprised by the changes, and some of them stopped immediately inside the doorway, causing a traffic jam. After we managed to herd everyone in, we peeked in to see what they were doing and saw them bunched up right by the pop door…such sheltered ducks. The new configuration may be new and scary now, but in a few days, it’ll be old news and they’ll be enjoying the new roosting areas. Even better, the ducks may begin laying in the nest boxes soon and we can start a new routine of checking the boxes for eggs.