Call me in twenty minutes

I went out to do emergency rabbit pen work today. We had freezing rain the other day, an inch! I looked at my rabbit shed/pen yesterday and noticed the ice had built up and caught water and froze. I could tell it could pull down my roof so my project for the next morning was Operation Rabbit Pen Rescue. This is the pen where the door froze shut and I had to make a new one a few days before.

Before I left I gave my mom my cell phone number and said, "If I am not in in 20 minutes call me." She gave me that look and asked what I was doing. It's dangerous just call in 20 minutes. My mother knows if she cannot get a hold of me in a few tries just to call for help.

I will admit this pen went up late November and was not really planned out as well as it could have been so it served its purpose. I will tweak it and make it better.

So I went out and moved the ducks first, Yes I had three ducks in with my rabbits, running below the pens. It actually worked quite well when the weather was cold. Then I moved my rabbits. My new door was not as wide as my rabbit cages so I had to move the rabbits by hand to spare pens and later lift the cages over the top of the pen. I had one damaged roof board but there was no way to successfully prop it so I decided to work only from the front and outside.

Twenty minutes had passed so it was time to head in. I made lunch, took a break, then went back out.

The entire roof had to come off and with the ice it was heavy. I chipped off what ice I could. There were three layers of snow and ice just from the last week. (we had winter all in one week here)

I chipped at the broken board to weaken it more and figured a little time would help it break a bit more. The plan, to just let the roof fall in the pen and replace it tomorrow I still have benches in there and really did not want them to get ruined but...

I heard what sounded like music from an ice cream truck and could not figure out where that noise was coming from. Oh, my back pocket. Yes, I do not use a cell phone much. By time I figured my butt was ringing, my hands were too wet to answer it. I just headed to the house to check in. I had one concerned mom waiting.

After a trip downtown, it was time to tuck in any animals and try to get the roof the rest of the way down before dusk. Success! No blood or injuries but I do have a mess to clean up tomorrow. And a new pen to design in my head this evening

My rabbits are in a spare mini coop for the night, all warm and properly fed. My ducks have a new home for the night and are not happy. They kept going back to the old pen. Its filled with ice so they had to re-home for the night.

So tomorrow will be a busy day, Hopefully it will not be an all day job. With homesteading you never know. One so called small project can take a day or two.


  • naomi.kohlmeier
    naomi.kohlmeier Posts: 380 ✭✭✭

    Wow! That is a day's work and then some. I'm glad the rabbits are safe and dry, hopefully you were able to warm up as well.

  • Monek Marie
    Monek Marie Posts: 3,535 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @naomi.kohlmeier It was 55 degrees here today. After what we have had that felt wonderful. And sun all day!

    I am tired. I will sleep well tonight

  • nicksamanda11
    nicksamanda11 Posts: 721 ✭✭✭✭

    I figured out halfway through the article that you didn't actually want us to call you in 20 minutes!

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,354 admin

    Ah, winter damage to pens. Not fun.

    We had one collapse undrr snow load a few winters ago. It was our guinea pen. Some flew into trees, some we caught just hanging out (we were fortunate). A couple were caught underneath, thankfully unharmed. The one in the tree though...we waited a couple days for it to do something. It would not come down for anything, it was cold and a little windy, and we do occasionally have snowy owls and a great horned owl that wouldn't hesitate to take its head off should they see it. The second day, it fell out of the tree. We scooped it up (I think put a fishing not over it), and put it in a different pen with the rest.

    Life is never dull with animals!

    Don't overwork yourself tomorrow @Denise Grant.

  • Monek Marie
    Monek Marie Posts: 3,535 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 2021

    @nicksamanda11 Well, I would have talked to you, lol.

    I have actually knocked myself out outdoors (at least twenty minutes) so if anything is a bit iffy I take a cell phone and give a time I will be back in and about where I should be. My mom is not able to check on me so it would be call family or 911. Today is an icy day as snow melts so it will be a move with care day.

    @LaurieLovesLearning yes, life is never dull with animals.

  • Michelle D
    Michelle D Posts: 1,415 ✭✭✭✭✭

    What an adventure. I'm glad to here that the animals are all safe and well. It is a blessing to have someone expecting you to check in at times. There have been times that I was home alone and had a questionable project to work on. I would ask a friend that lives a few miles away to call me after a specific amount of time and come rescue me if I didn't answer the phone.

  • Monek Marie
    Monek Marie Posts: 3,535 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Michelle D Prevention is a safe policy. I am glad you have someone you can call on.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,017 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Glad everyone is safe and unharmed. Ice and winter chores with animals can indeed be an adventure.

    Had a sheep we had just gotten and was told none were bred, give birth one year. Middle of February during a rain storm, 11:30 at night while husband was out of town. Out there by flashlight trying to divide shelter to keep other sheep away from lamb. Not fun, unfortunately lamb did not make it. Seems we also were not told that mom had a history of mastitis. (not sure of spelling there.)

    Ended up not keeping sheep after a couple years of trying.

    Watched my husband come sailing off our roof one day on a sheet of ice while trying to clear snow and ice after some weird weather. Projects can turn dangerous in a hurry.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,354 admin

    @vickeym What bad luck. Sigh.

    Your spelling is just fine. 😉

  • frogvalley
    frogvalley Posts: 675 ✭✭✭✭

    When our kids all left home, we wholeheartedly welcomed the EMPTY NEST. It was such a romantic notion to enjoy being able to go anywhere we wanted at a moments notice that we decided that we'd take a few years off from animal husbandry so we didn't have to tie ourselves down. In December of 2019, our son gave us his dog and then "Hello CoVid," so we ended up staying home anyway taking care of an ill mannered dog and not passing a lazy day watching the chickens. Best laid plans...right? Should've gotten the chickens.