We wish to fence in our property – but with 7 acres of property, that is a lot of fence! There are so many options available that it can be hard to make a choice.
With out a doubt, economy of the fencing comes into to play, but it is also important to consider the animal and their needs as well. Since we raise goats, and plan to continue to do so, the options become more narrow.
Goats have attitude, and keeping them in a fence can be tough. They will go under, through, and over any fence if possible.
Why we are Fencing
A bag of good goat feed costs around $17 (2013). Clearing an acre of thicket (brush, vines, over-growth) can take days. However, with our goats inside of a fence we can cut feed costs and they can do the work of clearing the land. It seems like a win-win to us!
Selecting a Fence
We plan to have a chain link fence around our back yard, where the children play the most. It looks nice and is very safe. It is, however, fairly expensive. We had once considered putting chain link fencing around our entire property, but the price is just a little too high to swallow.
Also, doing it on a budget, say $100 at a time, just goes too slowly. Our land rolls a bit too much for large paneling, which is also expensive. So, what can we do! Maybe electric fencing (also known as an electrified fence) is the way to go.
Details on the Electric Fence
We have elected to use a solar powered Electrified Fence Controller. This made sense to us because it ensures we do not raise our electric bill powering this fence and because we will end up placing the controller in a remote area of the property.
Yes, we could have used a DC controller, but using the solar powered version saves us from having to have 2 batteries, one that is on the fence and one we are charging.
We are using 14 gauge galvanized steel. The price and tinsel strength lead us to this choice. Aluminum is said to carry a higher charge, but I was worried it would bend/break too easily. It may have done just fine, but for now the galvanized steel is working great.
Should choose to install an electric fence, know that you will spend the most money on the controller. After that, it is the connectors or poles. We needed a wide variety of connectors (corner, t-post, wood post and step-in line poles), so the cost for those pieces was significant.
Expect to pay around $3-$5 for anywhere from 10-25 pieces of each type. The cost varies between how many are in the pack, and what they are. For example, a T-Post insulator might be flush, stand-off 2 inches, or stand-off 5 inches, etc.
Wood post insulators include nails, whereas the corner post insulators are just a simple oval shape with grooves – one to run wire through to connect it to the post and another to run the hot wire through.
A note about the step in posts: Consider what spacing you will be using between the wires. If you like or need a nice uniform distance, be sure the post has the correct heights you need. For us they did not match, causing some inconsistencies across the line.