Last fall we lost 4 of our 5 RIRs to a bear, who ripped the doors off our very sturdy coop. The conservation officer came out and confirmed it was a bear and said that electric fence would be the only thing to keep the bear from getting at the coop. We've been chicken-less since (our last girl went off to happily join a friend's flock). Yesterday I went to the local hardware store and bought a solar fence charger, wire, grounding rod and post insulators. The guy who helped me was very knowledgeable, but his experience is with using fence to keep his cattle, horses and pigs in - not keeping a bear out. Our plan is to put the electric fence around the coop (approx 20 foot square area) and let our new chickens (once we get them) free range during the day. We plan to only activate the fence at night when the girls are in the coop. While we have had coyotes and fox in the yard, we only had one problem when a coyote came through the yard and grabbed one of our hens. I didn't see the coyote after that - I think someone in the area took care of it. My questions are: 1) Do we need to put up a 5 wire fence? The predator fencing recommendation I saw said to space the wires at 6" - 8" - 10" - 10" - 10". If not, can we get away with 1 strand at bear nose height? If so, what would be the best height? 2) The conservation officer told us to bait the fence for a week with hot dogs so that anything that would be interested in the coop gets a zap. Others have said that the sound an electric fence makes is enough to deter a bear. Has anyone else baited their fence? What would you recommend? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!