I'm going to have to install some fencing for our goats soon, and I'll have to do it pretty much alone since my husband works so much. Eventually I like to fence in the entire 6 acre perimeter, but I need at least an acre for now.
What I'd like to know is what would be the easiest kind of fencing for me to handle alone? I have rocky soil with shale bedrock 1-2 feet down. Assuming I can plant those posts myself, what would be the easiest type of fence to install by myself. Would it be easier to handle electric wire and stretch one wire at a time or woven wire? I'm not sure I have a good idea of how I'll even stretch a 330' roll of woven wire, especially considering what will I anchor the come along to? I know a lot of people use a four wheeler, but we don't have one.
From one woman to another I found solar electric the easiest. Even pounding posts, I just make sure to do that after a rain, after the mud has gone away, but the soil is still softer. I think poly wire is the easiest. Get your connectors at e-bay & go for it. I find that the electric tape deteriorates in the AZ sun.
Maybe gaduate the distance from bottom (closer) to the top so they can't get under or between.
Electric fencing is always good for resale.
I do this to move my horses from one place to another and have found they respect the wire & they don't test it anymore so I don't have to pound the t-posts any deeper than the top of the flange.
Don't know how "testy" goats are... But you can do it!
I have polywire for my goats with a solar charger..it's not been up very long..just over a year. The t posts are not too hard to drive in yourself with one of those drivers that slip over the post you can get the hardware to fasten wire to the posts and set it all up in no time..most just snap right on the posts.
For goats, I have found that cattle panels are fairly easy to install. I use T-posts, and install them every 8 feet. I lean a cattle panel up against the posts, and start fastening with wire. Electric mesh fence from Kencove.com seems to work pretty well also, as long as you can mow first so that it does not touch the grass, and you can check on it regularly. After trying it a time or 2, they seem to leave it alone for awhile. If it is off for too long, they will test it again. I have nubians, so cannot speak for other breeds right now. My nubians do not seem to be jumpers, so 42" fence does fine.
Electric fencing with step in posts is the easiest to install.
Step in. Not very tall, easily knocked over, break at the base easily.
T-posts. Use the driver to install. Much taller, much stronger.
Wood posts. Hardest to install. Very strong (big ones at least).
Electric. Tape or wire, both are easy to install. Not terribly effective solo.
Welded wire. Pretty easy to install solo. Rolls are light enough to handle comfortably. Doesn't take much tension to stand up nicely.
Woven wire. Rolls are heavy and hard to manage solo. Requires lots of tension to stand up nicely, pulling out corner posts frequently.
If you are doing the electric fence which is by far the easiest, A charger that plugs into the grid is cheaper than solar chargers. It will work with weeds against the fence better than solar, and costs very little to opperate.
Put a steel T post at each corner or curve and steel electric fence posts between them.
To have sucess with goats and an electric fence, put a short stretch of it across the pen they are in now. After they get a training session where the can't get away from you, they will not ram through it when they are turned out in the pasture. Three wires should hold them, but four would be safer. Space them 8 or 9 inches apart.
Be sure to get a good ground rod for the fence charger, whether it's Elec, or Solar. It needs to be in the ground about 6 feet, especially in dry ground like most of the country has had this summer.
For a permanent fence check out the Hi tensile. Cost about .15 cents a foot for 5 strands. It must be built with springs in each line. If you want I can get you lots of information.www.kencove.com 1 800 536 2683 Jay
I put up electric fence not long ago for our two nubians. I used a nice combination of things to make it work. I asked lots of questions both here and at every farm/feed store around. I went with a Parmak plug in charger. It's really nice, it has a gauge on the front that shows how well the fence is working plus it makes a nice clicking sound everytime it pulses electricity through the wires. I used two nice trees with nail-in insulators for the back corners and metal T-posts for the front corners closest to the house where there were no trees. There are insulators that just snap onto those posts. I used step-in plastic posts with built in clips to hold the fence every 12 feet in between. I used two strands of aluminum wire for the bottom of the fence, spaced 6 inches apart. Strand number 3 is 8 inches above strand number 2 and it is 3/4" polytape. Strand number 4 is also 8 inches above strand number three but is the aluminum wire again. Strand number 5 is again 8 inches above strand number 4 but is the polytape. I chose the polytape, not only because I ran out of the aluminum wire and is cheaper, but also because it's much more visible. I don't think the polytape delivers as strong a punch (my little 4yo son regularly touches it on purpose) but it's more of a deterant because everyone can see it better.
This fence may not last forever, but it was quick (about 3 hours once we figured out what we were doing), easy (the hardest part was pounding in the 8 feet ground rod) and fairly inexpensive (those step-in posts were only $1.75 each at Lowes and required no insulators.)
The easiest fence for me to put up is expensive, about $2 per running foot, but very effective. I use combo panels and t-posts every 8 feet. To attach the panels to the t-posts, I use uv-stabilized 8" plastic cable ties with a working load of 75 lbs. I use three or four per t-post. I LOVE cable-ties. I've had most in place for two years now, and no trouble. I just put up 150 feet of fence, with a gate, this past Sunday afternoon. Post driving was really hard, so it took me a couple of hours. This is for my buck pen. PM me if you want a couple of installation tips (to avoid the mistakes I made the first time I did this).
The basic message of liberalism is simply: The true measure of a society is how it treats the weak and the needy. A simple Christian message (Matthew 25:40). -Garrison Keillor
Ok, I have a question. You can use T-stakes for the corners of the electric fence??? See, I'm kinda wanting something like this because our soil is only about 1 foot deep in some places with shale bedrock. I know it can be dug because my neighbor installed a fence, but it sounds back breaking to me.
I like the sound of cattle panels as well. What kind of corner posts would I need.
If using cattle panels, corner posts can be regular T post or anything. I have a few corners without posts, because the cattle panels when tied together at a corner are really stable by themselves. However, that corner will be able to move around a little as the goats push on it. Never had any problems yet.
I'm thinking I'll need the taller panels since we will eventually have a horse in with the goats....which panels would I need to keep both types of animals in? There are 34" tall, which I know is too short...and there is 52" tall, which would be good. But what kind of graduation of holes at the bottom? I have nigerian dwarf goats.
I'm sorry, just one more thing....I live on a hill. That won't be a problem with cattle panels will it?
I'd really like to fence in the whole 6acres into two paddocks. I don't know if we can afford to do that with cattle panels, but it definitely sounds easier than anything else. I still can't get my head around what I need to do to install an electric fence.
You can use T-stakes for the corners of the electric fence???
I did. It was very easy. First you've got to understand that I used the good, old fashioned electric fence and not the newer high tensile fence. My electric fence uses 19 gauge aluminum wire and is only stretched as tight as I could easily pull it with my hands. high tensile wire uses something like 12 gauge steel wire and requires daisy reels to unwind it and those inline strainers and springs to tighten it really tight.
My electric fence works just fine with T-posts as the corners. A high tensile fence needs a large diameter wooded post sunk at least 4feet into the ground and substantial bracing.
And apparently I'm not using the strongest charger in the world. And apparently I don't have the brightest 4yo in the world. And I really don't think that the polytape carries as much of a charge as the aluminum wire and I really do believe that it is a great visual deterant and that visual deterants are important to remind everyone where the fence is.
I also have metal t-posts on corners of an electric fence. Works fine, and there's no reason it wouldn't. I'm not running tension on the wires, so standard t-post plastic offsets work just fine.
I'm currently running the hardest hitting charger TSC sells. It's enough I can see it on my electric bill. To say it hits hard is an understatement, and yes, I've tested it myself.
If you're not getting a good zap with the tape, I'd be inclined to first examine the grounds. They usually aren't well done, and a weak zap results.
As for visibility, I find it crucial. I don't want animals tangling with my fence, ripping it apart. I want them to see it and know it hurts. That way they stay away from it. If all the animal knows is that randomly it gets zapped by something it cannot see, it learns nothing. Be it livestock or predator.