Fencing to keep predators out

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Gardenlady2, Dec 2, 2013.

  1. Gardenlady2

    Gardenlady2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Will electric wire fencing be sufficient protection against predators (assuming power doesn't go out), or should I put up regular fencing too? We have foxes, coyotes, and possums in the area. We are putting up 6ft electric fence with 6 wires and strong charger to keep deer and other critters out of the garden, orchard, and vineyard. I'm hoping this will be enough to protect the chickens too. Anyone tried this?
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I use three type of fencing. First two are electrical; first is electrified poultry netting that keeps virtually all out except raptors, and second is simply high tensil electric wire which keeps dogs out and sometime critters like raccoons and opossums if properly placed. The other is simply woven wire that keeps dogs out. Some predators like foxes and coyotes can over time figure out even your electrified poultry netting. After all the fun with various fencing type I have found the electrified fencing to be the most effective and most expensive among the fence types. Also use dogs which makes so foxes and coyotes do not have opportunity to learn because they get chased off and my dogs can get into pens to get after raptors that otherwise simply fly in. No matter how you do it, think in terms of layers and also consider cover birds can seek as refuge and have a mixed flock with a rooster (adult) that can repel some raptors.
     
  3. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    I was wondering how well the charged netting worked
     
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I am liking it a lot. Does take a stronger charger and cannot be made to enclose huge areas but is easy to move about. I like it. Once you have hot paddocks up, you can have not hot and predators will not test it.
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Centrarchid, one problem with that for me is that people drop dogs off out here instead of taking them to the pound. Also, raccoons, possums, coyotes, and foxes have babies that grow up and go in search of new territory. I have electric netting from Premier and it works great. I agree that once something gets bit, they don’t test it any more. Even with the power off that netting is a great deterrent for them. But new predators that haven’t been bit will continue to show up.

    A question. Is your high tensile electric wire used alone or do you have it in conjunction with some type of fencing to keep the chickens from leaving the protected area? I find that if a chicken touches the electrified wire with their comb or wattles they will get shocked but their feathers insulate them unless they are wet. Very young chicks can walk though that netting without a problem until they are maybe 4 weeks old. Their down/feathers protects them.

    When they approach the netting or fence, practically any ground or climbing predator will sniff it and touch it with their nose, lick it, or touch it with their feet. You don’t have to worry about their fur insulating them from the shock. Some people even smear peanut butter on the wire to make sure the animal licks it and gets a good solid shock.

    I’ve had my netting for two years. I’ve lost a couple to an owl, nothing else in that time and several people have dropped dogs off in this area. I’m happy with mine netting.
     
  6. JackE

    JackE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have the electrified poultry netting from Premier. It has been in use going on two yrs, and has been the answer for me, as far as predators go. I lost 16 birds in two separate day attacks to the fox. I had to do something, or I would have been totally wiped out. I started with 300', it worked so well I went and bought 300' more. You can surround and protect a big area, it's just a matter of how much you want to spend. The fox, and many other preds are still around, but my birds get out everyday, and I don't have to worry about them. Once the predator takes over 7000Vs to the face, they lose all interest in chicken dinner. I don't think they are going to sit back and plan on how they can defeat the fence. They will look elsewhere.

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I have two perimeters, an outer and an inner. The outer perimeter is the high tensile with three wires; one at 6”, one at 18”, and another at 30”. The outer perimeter stops dogs very well except for mine which is important. The inner perimeter is a single wire only about 8” off ground and about same distance from pens. This inner perimeter stops critters that try to get through pen material that by itself cannot stop even my bare hands. Together the single hot wire and pen material seems to stop all ground predators.
    Neither perimeter stops chicken movements. I can strongly influence ranging habits of flocks by positioning feeders and cover patches. My birds would range much larger area if all grass was much shorter. During summer I can keep the bulk of the 120 free-range birds on what is just about three acres. Another flock based in yard and made up of less than 10 birds will range a similar sized area because it is much more open and I feed them less. Some of the older birds including my adult American Dominique flock spend the bulk of its time beyond the outer perimeter but still on my property. The dogs are the key to keeping predators off those birds but the flock still roosts within the outer perimeter.
    The electrified poultry netting paddocks are within the outer perimeter. Such does restrict movement of older juveniles and adult American Dominiques although the games too small to fly over it can walk through.
    Look at my Free-Range Keeping of American Dominiques thread to see my decidedly atypical forage management system. It gives me exceptional control over ranging habits without resorting to outright confinement making so I can keep those entirely on my property. It looks weird but is seems to work very well. Biggest problem is I have to wait until birds roost to do head counts.
    I have lost one game cockerel to a Great-horned Owl this fall in the fenced in area. Dogs prevented owl from actually eating catch and owl has not returned since. A opossum got in an disrupted a hen brooding eggs on ground but dog caught opossum that night.
    Problems of concern involving predators all occurred when dogs where shut up and that occurred with birds beyond outside perimeter.
     
  8. thomasboyle

    thomasboyle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jack, how high is your fence, and how far a part are the posts? Premier has many different types, and I like the look of yours. Any problems with hawks?
     
  9. JackE

    JackE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have the PermaNet from Premier. It is 4' high,and the posts are 8' apart. I have hawks, owls, and I've even seen eagles out there in the marsh behind the coop. I (KNOCKING on a big piece of wood right now) haven't had any loses to air attack. I'm not fooling myself that it can't happen, but doing OK so far. My birds seem to be well tuned to airborne threats. I don't have a rooster, but if one of them spots a threat, they will give out the warning, and they ALL haul butt to cover. Either under the coop, or in the sizable brush area behind the coop. I have even seen them react the same way to crows giving out their hawk warning call. The crows make a certain call when hawks come around, and the chickens know it. I've seen the crows drive hawks away too, which is a very good thing. I've heard about people having problems with crows, but not me, I like them around. Much better than a hawk buffett.
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2013
  10. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    Can this netting be run on a shock box sold for livestock? Can it touch the ground? What are the posts made of?
     

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