It was lovely to run into friends from the council’s Environment & Community Team today at Rowntree’s Park who were in the midst of facilitating a brand new ‘safe’ house for ducks on the lake.
Commissioned by the Friends of Rowntree Park, the newly made duck house offers a safe nesting space in the park for ducks, moorhens and coots away from their natural predators: foxes, crows, magpies, cats and even pike (that get washed in from the river when the park floods).
With no natural nesting areas amongst the concrete, a floating wooden home was the answer.
It was made by the guys at York Men’s Shed, a great community group based at Hull Road Park which sees men of all ages come together every week to socialise and make ‘stuff’.
87-year old Ted started coming to the Men’s Shed when his wife died some time ago.
“This is our first community project,” he told me.
“Someone brought in a little sketch of the duck house and I immediately had it all drawn out. I used to be a builder, my grandson has the business now. He gave us the materials which were off-cuts from a roofing project he did.”
“This group is therapy for me. It is nice to meet lovely chaps and feel the comradeship. It is good to help one another.”
“And it is really great to do a project together for the community, we hope to do more of it.”
So, a new safe space in the park for ducks to rear their young, made by a group of men who combat social isolation by coming together and working on projects that matter. Community collaboration at its best.