Types of electric fencing

5 April 2017  |  Admin

Types of Electric Fencing

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Electric Fencing is a very flexible tool for both animal and land management. It can be used in a number of different ways and every instillation will be slightly different from application to application.

We have attempted to give examples of most applications but if you need to keep something out of an area or in side an area  the chances are an electric fence will work for you.


Temporary Electric Fence or Mobile Fence :

Gate ways , If a gate is in poor repair or just missing a small electric fencing energiser and a short length of electric fencing twine can be a quick fix . It is important to consider the height of the animals you need the electric fence to contain. When in doubt aim to but a live line at about chest height.  If there are young stock in the field add an extra line lower.

Strip Grazing

Strip grazing with an electric fence


Strip grazing, notice the pony respects the green electric fencing tape

This is a very popular application for electric fencing with horses and ponies , but it can be used with any livestock as required.
Strip grazing is the process of dividing up a larger field in to small sections.

There are a some signification benefits to this:

Most animals are poor grazers and will for choice only eat the sweet grass and leave the rough grass. by forcing them in to a smaller area the livestock will have to eat both the sweet grass and the rough grass. If they are left to eat only the sweet grass the rough grass will not be touched and will steadily take over a bigger area of the field.

By dividing up the field with electric fencing and then grazing just one area a time the grass that is not being grazed will be able to recover and re grow. Remember over grazed grass land takes a lot longer to recover. With luck you will have more grazing a lot later in to the year.

Smaller areas are easier to poop pick . This mainly applies to horses but it is a lot less back breaking to collect dung out out a smaller area than to walk around a much larger field. Collecting dung and taking it away from the field is important for control of internal parasites and also helps the grass recover quicker.

Poultry electric fencing nets.

Poultry nets comes in 25meter and 50 meter lengths it is very easy to use and can be moved around the garden or field. The birds are protected behind an electric fence ( net ) and can be moved to clean areas evey few weeks.

Sheep electric fence nets

These are typically used to divide up larger fields or to create a small controlled area for lambing. Sheep nets are also used to keep livestock away from a weak hedge that they could otherwise escape through. The sheep nets are very quick to move about and easy to  put up.  An important consideration with all electric fencing nets is the output of th e electric fencing energiser used to power them. Electric fencing nets take a fair amount of energy look at the maximum number of nets your energisers can power and do not exceed it .

Electric fencing equipment for temporary fencing

Plastic posts in either 3ft or 4ft sizes

Electric fencing tape usually in 20mm width

9 volt or 12 volt energiser – This type of electric fence energiser can be picked up and moved as required.


Permanent Electric Fence :


wooden posts with 40mm tape fitted


Wooden posts with 40mm green electric fencing tape fitted


This type of fence comes as two main types :

Just an electric fence or Electric fence on an existing wooden fence.

Just an electric fence will have wooden posts with insulators screwed in typically it will have steel wire or electric fencing rope. The posts are installed at 5-7 meter gaps . This type of fence offers signification cost savings over a traditional post and rail fence. Cattle, sheep and pigs are easily kept in by this sort of fence.

As with all electric fencing there is no reason why three lines of a 40mm tape mounter on wooden posts could not be used to keep in horses .

Electric fence on a existing fence.


Great ezample of a post and rail fence with electric fencing fitted


Great ezample of a post and rail fence with electric fencing fitted

Both old and new wooden fences can benefit from electric fencing fitting to discourage contact from livestock . Cattle using a wooden fence as a scratching post will soon push the post out of line or even push it over.
In many areas barbed wire is used and this can cause horrific damage to live stock . The addition of distance insulators to an existing barbed wire fence will stop the animal from coming in to contact with the barbs.
For normal post and rail fencing short insulators can be used to hold the electric fence just in front of the rails.
I cannot stress enough how important it is to protect your wooden fence from all types of live stock , 600kg of horse or cow leaning on a fence will soon cause a lot of damage.

Barbed wire with electric fence fitted


Some old barbed wire with a electric fence fitted to protect livestock


Anti Predator electric Fence

This type of fence is used by the poultry industry to protect hens that have external runs ( free range ) . The birds runs will have a wooden post and mesh fence with the addition of a number of live lines of electric fencing mounted on the out side of the fence . There purpose is to stop a fox ( or other predator ) from climbing over the mesh fence.


Equipment for use on permanent electric fences :

Mains powered ( 240 volt ) energisers , permanent fences are usually significantly longer than temporary fences . More power is required so when ever possible a mains energiser is used. We would always suggest fitting a lighting diverter  ( read this Lighting blog for more information ).

Earthing ,  This is a large subject in its own right but basicly longer fences require more earthing .  More information here

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