Monday, October 20, 2014

A SO SO Product Review





Despite the fact that it is almost November and I am still having to mow my grass my little experiment with temporary fencing has had to come to an end. The Cutting crew ate everything in the areas I had them housed in and I finally had to put them out in the main pasture for these last few weeks until they get introduced to the rams. This is all just as well because the batteries on my Solar electric fence chargers both decided to die this week. Not even a full years worth of charging power in those things.

We went and picked up two replacement batteries which ran us $30.00 each btw. Seems a bit expensive to me and if the replacement batteries only last a year themselves well the entire thing just seems a bit too temporary for the money in my opinion.

That being said I have to admit the set up worked and worked well as long as I used the light nylon and foil fence wire. The charger really didn't have the ohms or whatever to kick solid wire into gear. Everything was fine except for those one or two Sheep that finally figured out their wool was thick enough they could ignore the wire. After that it still basically did it's job because the one or two trouble makers didn't have the courage to get too far from the others who wouldn't walk through the fence. The trouble makers (Looking at Sandwich and Molly) would stay close to where the other sheep were grazing and just be happy to be in the greener stuff. Eventually some loud truck or something would drive by and start a panic attack and they would jump back in with the others.


After the lovely green moist grass began to dry up however the entire dynamic started to change. A third troublemaker joined the other two. The big Whether who is the size of a steer named Bob. He was a bottle baby and treated like a pet for so long he knows all the tricks and would head for the front side of the barn where he knew the grain was kept along with the treat bag and if all else failed the Alfalfa field.

All this was going on as the battery was dying and kicking out very little juice so the others began getting brave and I caught them all in the Alfalfa field last night. Not good. Green Alfalfa is not stuff you want the critters to graze on because it can cause bloat and other bad things unless it has been properly dried and baled. So I have been having to run em into the pasture now and then putting them all up at night. The cutting crew's days of browsing whenever they want has come to an end because of a little section of electric fence they wouldn't respect.

As I said the setup worked well most of the Summer but as a long term plan if the batteries die after less than a years use it wouldn't work too well. All in all when you count in the money I spent on wire, stakes, the charger and such I am not sure if I really saved money over the long run. I certainly did save some time and feed costs though.

I still think a permanent fence design will work better overall.

Keep Prepping Everyone!!!


8 comments:

  1. I run baling twine along my electric fences. It makes the wire viable to the cows, and if the power goes off they still stay clear. Handy sometimes, as a length of twine alone can serve as an emergency fence after they've been shocked a few times. Works great with my dumb cattle, (and my dog), not sure if it will work with goats.

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    1. MV - The horses and Dog won't go near the electric fence, even the nylon wire with foil one I use. Even my neighbors cattle next door won't come anywhere near it. The damned sheep though they figured out that light stretchy wire can't penetrate their wool so they will duck their heads and just blast through. Or well one in particular does then if she knocks it down the others will follow.

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  2. I use 110 on one fence and a 12v car battery/charger on the other, the battery lasts for several weeks as I only turn it on when I put the horse up at night so I can recharge during the day if I need to. I pulled the unit out of the weeds when I saw some old electric wire, the drive by farmer had discarded it but it was sealed and works fine. I think maybe a combination of solar panel to charge a full size battery might work better than those small units. If sheep are like goats, it won't work but so good as they just aren't smart enough to fear the shock. I hold a one ton horse with a single ribbon, he will get his nose near it to test but really hates the thing.

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    1. Sf - I think my power is enough although the lack of battery time is discouraging. It's the light nylon wire. It just won't penetrate their wool. The horses are deathly afraid of the wire, won't go near it. I can actually keep them in just by laying wire across the ground they are so afraid of it. The sheep? They just put their heads down and walk.

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    2. I don't have the numbers to do the calcs, but I am with Sunnybrook, I think you need more in the way of panels for that set up.

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  3. Sheep and Sheepople its all the same right???

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    Replies
    1. Rob - Nah Sheeple vote for democrats :(

      Even after they die.

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