More from: barbed wire

Electric Fencing: When You Need a Fence Fast and Cheap

Imagine owning a herd of bison and suddenly learning they would have to be moved to a new piece of land. You buy the land, but then what? You have to build fencing to keep the bison in. That’s just what restaurant owner Connie Hale experienced earlier this year.

Hale keeps a herd of bison but due to a change in rent, she quickly had to buy a new piece of land and move her animals. Being a busy business owner didn’t leave her any time to actually work on the land, so in jumped the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets and the Virginia Tech Department of Agriculture.

They immediately went to work to build an electric fence covering a large enough area to contain the animals. Once that fence was done, they began working on the rest of the property.

Connie Hale’s story is not all that unique. Both large cattle ranchers and hobby owners can find themselves in a world of hurt if they need a new fencing solution quickly. Thank goodness for electric fencing. With the right supplies and a little bit of time, you can put up a good electric fence fairly quickly.

Benefits of Electric Fencing

Why would someone choose electric fencing over traditional barbed wire? Because electric fences are better. There’s just no two ways about it. Check out the following advantages of electric over its barbed wire cousin:

Speed – There is no question that you can put up an electric fence faster than a barbed wire fence. You do not need nearly as many posts, the posts don’t have to be driven in so deeply, and you’re not fumbling with cumbersome rolls of wire.

Expense – The costs of electrified fencing have come down quite a bit in recent years. Again, it comes down to the number of posts you need. Fewer posts means a lower overall cost. Electrified fencing rope is also cheaper than barbed wire.

Safety – Barbed wire is not necessarily the safest for ranch animals. Barbed wire is sharp and painful to make contact with. By comparison, electrified fencing is very safe. Any animal touching an electrified fence receives a minor but very effective shock.

Maintenance – Electric fences are a lot easier to maintain. You can easily change out sections of damaged wire with very little effort. And as long as you make sure your energizers are kept in good working order, you will not have to worry about the effectiveness of your fence.

 

Electric Fencing can be Customized

Another great benefit of electrified fencing is that it is easily customized. Take the case of Norm and Donna Ward of Alberta, Canada for example. The two veteran ranchers own quite a bit of land in Canada’s heartland on which they raise beef cattle.

Due to the Ward’s philosophy of sustainable ranching practices, they are constantly rotating their grazing fields. But rather than dividing up the ranch into a bunch of smaller parcels, Norm decided it was better to come up with a customized fencing solution that allowed him to move his fences as needed.

He came up with the prefect tool by building a specialized trailer for carrying his posts and fencing wire. The trailer is pulled with a tractor or truck, reeling out the fence as he goes. He says he can fence an entire quarter section in less than 3 hours.

Electrified fencing is fast, cheap, and extremely easy to deploy. It is the obvious choice regardless of the size of your land or the scope of your operation.

 


Key Things to Know About Electric Fencing

Here at Mytee Products, we have been working to expand our inventory of items for agricultural customers. This includes our electric fencing inventory. Over the last few months, we have added a number of energizers and fencing material products to the agricultural category. We hope you find them useful.

Having said all that, we know that some of the customers who purchase electric fencing materials from us are getting into electric fencing for the first time. They are either transitioning from barbed wire to electric fencing, or they run fairly small operations and are setting up their fences for the first time.We want to help you make the best of your electric fencing choices. We are certainly not experts in cattle, but we do know a bit about electric fencing. We know there are two important things you should be aware of before you begin installing your fences:

1. Design and Layout Are Important

People unfamiliar with electric fencing do not realize that it differs considerably from barbed wire. A barbed wire fence acts as a physical barrier to keep cattle in. As such, barbed wire fences have to be designed and laid out in such a way as to prevent cattle from using brute strength to knock them over. Property owners have to use lots of posts and multiple lines of wire to counteract the physical strength of cattle.

An electric fence is not a physical barrier. It is a psychological barrier. As such, it does not have to be as strong or robust as barbed wire. But electric fencing does have to be designed in such a way as to take advantage of the psychology of cattle, especially if you want the cattle to behave in certain ways.

For example, alleys have to be designed with a little more width when electric fencing is being used. You want alleys to be wide enough to accommodate congestion without forcing cattle to get too close to the wires. Otherwise, traffic may come to a standstill because cattle believe they do not have enough room to get where they are going without touching the fence.

2. Cattle Have to Be Trained to Electric Fencing

The second thing to note is that cattle that have never been exposed to electric fencing have to be trained to it. Don’t worry, training is neither harmful nor difficult. Most cattle can be trained in a day or so using a very simple method that involves setting up a small training fence inside a barn or physically contained exterior yard.

The idea is to set up the temporary training fence so that there is an open way around it on one end. Then place hay on one side and water on the other. Cattle looking to get to one or the other by going through the fence will receive an uncomfortable reminder that touching the fence is not a good idea. They will eventually figure out that it is better to walk around the open end to get to the hay or water.

Once an animal makes that connection, the psychological training is complete. The animal will now avoid the fence altogether. It can be introduced to the pasture with the knowledge that the animal will not go near the permanent fence.

Whether you own a large ranch or a small hobby farm, we have the electric fencing materials you need to keep your cattle in. Please do not hesitate to ask if you have any questions. We are more than happy to help you make the right purchase decision for your needs.