Electric is the only way to keep chickens safe

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by gotthefever, Nov 8, 2014.

  1. gotthefever

    gotthefever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    http://electricfencing.blogspot.com/2008/11/using-electric-fence-to-protect-poultry.html


    This is post regarding a scientific real world test done to prove multiple points about predator behavior and how simple the solution is. I found this because I wanted to find out more about hot wire and ground wire for potential climbing...turns out, as I figured climbing and jumping over the wire is not the norm because an animal is sniffing to investigate first then...ZAP!

    I was personally afraid of hooking up electric, I thought it would be to complicated, until I talked to the a TSC employee who also installs for folks and we did it ourselves! You can jump different runs together, it should not connect to itself and you don't need the expensvive 5 mile charger for backyard pens and runs, etc.

    It took a few hours, was safe, simple and easy to work with. You will be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is, I promise!!! Also, nice to be able to leave chickens to range without constant worry!!!

    Just FYI to help keep those named chickens (and the money flock) safe!

    -A
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    No to your title. No single method protects birds outdoors. Same applies for dogs and run design. Always think in layers where more than one defense is at play. Also take advantage of the behaviors that both the chickens and their predators exhibit.
     
    2 people like this.
  3. Bessetti

    Bessetti Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hawks can easily get them with just an electric fence. Plus, the fence can get little kids.
     
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Fence not really dangerous, rather very unpleasant when properly used. Little kids quickly learn to either avoid fence or to navigate around it. Proper supervision facilitates learning process.



    I do not say "do not use electric fences", rather they should not be the only method. I use them extensively very effectively and recognize their limitations.
     
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  5. gotthefever

    gotthefever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have worked at a horse farm for 15 years, been shocked 3 times. Yep, I backed my big but into it, elbowed it and headed it.

    We wear shoes, it insulates the shock. Even still the smaller charger will not harm anyone. Look at the jokes on you tube where people hold hands to hit it.

    The safety is a non issue.

    BTW, it feels exactly like when you bump your funny bone.
     
  6. gotthefever

    gotthefever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The moral of this post is that its some great info for folks who have a story similar to mine in that I do not want an imobile run, but I want my pets to be safe. I can move my run anywhere as long as I "jump" to anaother fence strand or to the charger. Or people who do want a stationary run, but don't want to lose any chickens.

    Oh, I have plentiful owls which I love, the run is covered. And will be covered with a couple +/_ runs of wire across the top for "just in case". Better to never find out you needed more...


    So far in my interweb research, personal experiences and scientific study, I have found that you can, with proper application protect 100%. (or as nearly as nature allows of course).

    I am not digging in fence or blocks, because I want to move the pen. 4 inch high HOT wire will stop digging.

    visible barrier of chain link behind electric wire n(and right now 3' of garden fabric so so the little bantams cant squeeze through. Probably change that to the garden fabric because electic on outside will prohibit raccoon and hawk reaching in(probably?)
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2014
  7. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    Are you really trying to suggest that an electric fence offers anywhere near 100% protection against raptors?

    How about say a very small animal like for example a weasel that can easily go under the low wire? Are you suggesting that it will stop them anywhere near 100%?

    Or how about snakes, that again can easily go under a standard low wire, 100% protection?

    An electric fence is a strong 'deterrent' but it is no where near 100% protection against predators on it's own, you are only lying and fooling yourself if you believe that...

    The article you linked to is also severely flawed as the observations and study revolved against a single predator for a very limited time, that is hardly conclusive of anything, except that it stopped those foxes for those 11 weeks...

    Also I have seen pig headed and/or stupid livestock, as well as heavily furred livestock bulldoze electric fences like they didn't exist, I have zero doubts that there are predators that will do the same when hungry...
     
  8. gotthefever

    gotthefever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Meep Beep,

    Thank you for replying. Forgive my edit and let me edit and add here that I appreciate that you took the time to read the article I included. This was one of many that I took in and considered when deciding how to predator proof PRIOR to getting chickens. I wish more folks took the time that you did to look into things before they, "went to the coop and...", don't you?

    I would certainly not say use only electric. That is illogical and foolhardy. Plus, during my research I watched videos of racccoons and foxes slipping through single electric strands. I do not know if the charge wasn't strong enough or the wires were spaced too far apart. Not my design. Which I know still needs work!

    I wanted to make a point that there is a really great, simple, inexpensive way to keep the chickens safe and exciting that they can still be mobile and all the good things that go with that.

    The research shows (feral cats and foxes) a visible barrier, behind an electric fence is the key. There are other details as well... The secondary barrier can be very lightweight, in my opinion, which is again based on research and understanding animal behavior, where they do not know the strength of it because they do not have a human mind to work such things out.

    They will not run and jump to climb an unknown. They investigate with their nose. Zap. Perhaps a second investigation...Zap. They see that there is a barrier behind the wire...but never get that far.

    Yes, I do have a concern about weasels. I have a few months to make the coop weasel proof. I dont' think I could ever build a run that would be weasel proof, no matter how much patching and filling in gaps I could do. I have to find out if they investigate with their noses also...I will bait the electric if that is the case, they are very territorial I believe. So, once the one who's area I live in is "trained", he will know, no dinner from my place (ouch!)

    My dear 65 lb Coon hound hit the electric. She refuses to go into the back yard, it was that memorable.

    I didn't want the expense or permanence of digging hardware cloth into the ground. Or placing pavers or dealing with cleaning a pen. I have a heavy mesh cover on the run, so owls and hawks are out of luck. I could electrify the top, or the whole pen if I so desired.

    Just a great option that people shouldn't be afraid of safety, cost, and ease of installation wise! I feel so badly when someone comes saying, something got my chickens, what do I do?"

    -A
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2015
  9. gotthefever

    gotthefever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Centrarchid and all,


    I mistakenly figure (read assume, argh!) that folks could figure for themselves that there must be a second barrier, some type of sturdy cover overhead and a tight coop. I will be more clear and specific in the future...
    [​IMG]

    -A
     
  10. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    Fur is a pretty good electric insulator, and if the animal has a decent fur coat and doesn't touch the fence with bare skin like their nose for example the fur can insulated against a shock... Also there are two distinct types of electric fence, one that is only hot wires and depends on the animal grounding out to the ground itself, and the second type is fences that have hot and ground wires so that animal can get shocked by touching a hot and ground wire or a hot wire and ground... The dual hot/ground wire systems work better but both are hardly perfect, during dry conditions, frozen conditions, snow covering or when the ground is say covered with something like dead and dry vegetation, many animals will generally not ground out to ground and thus avoid shock, and/or avoid shock if they don't touch a ground wire that is included... This is the most common reason electric fences fail...

    When electric fences work as they should they work well, but there are many instances in which they will fail or perform poorly and that could change within hours depending on weather... They work well at keeping livestock in because chances are the livestock will encounter the fence when it's working and leave a lasting memory that keeps them from testing the fence again... This lasting memory effect is greatly diminished in predator threats that are ever changing...
     

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