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Electric Fencing Hints

  • Jim Browne, Karakan, Merton, Vic.

Training Paddocks

A small maximum security electrified training paddock is a useful adjunct to any cashmere goat property. Goats are very intelligent and will quickly learn to respect electric fencing.

A training paddock is essential when introducing feral goats onto the farm from the wild. These goats should be hand fed in this paddock for the first three or four weeks.

A variety of designs are suitable but all must be goat proof and incorporate electrified wires where potential escapees will always come in contact with them. Training paddocks are also suitable for re-educating rogue animals or for keeping the odd special animal.

Good Voltage

It is necessary to maintain a higher voltage on electric fences for goats than cattle. The fence should be kept above 3000V, which requires a good quality energiser and detailed attention to fence construction. A good quality voltmeter is essential for testing and fault finding.

Energiser Design

There are a variety of energisers on the market. Input power is no guide to the effectiveness of an energiser when connected to a fence line. Those with bigger capacitors tend to hold the voltage better against a given fence "leakage" and are worth the additional outlay.

Many units are fitted with low power terminals for use during the fire season. Generally the voltage maintained on the fence using these terminals is around 1200V and insufficient to deter a determined goat. Where a lot of electric fencing is used, a dual energiser system with a smaller power input, large capacitor energiser for summer and a more powerful unit to overcome winter and spring leakage can be used. Sound construction techniques and switching the unit off on days of high risk should eliminate any danger of fire.

Electrical Connections

Good electrical connections are important and these should be readily removable to assist in fault detection.

Normal 2.5mm (121/2g) High Tensile wire makes excellent connectors with good electrical properties. Do not use copper wire connected to the galvanised live wires as this readily corrodes.

Figure 1

2.5mm H.T. wire connector using 16mm poly pipe handle.  Note large cotton reel china insulator for wire insulation quite satisfactory for wire up to 2.5mm diameter.

2.5mm H.T. wire threaded through 16mm (1/2") polypipe provides excellent under-gate connection. Wire ends are bent to form connectors.

Figure 2

Carrying power under a gate. 2.5mm wire encased In 16mm poly pipe. Bend ends over and tie to keep out water. Do not forget to take an earth wire under the gate as well.

The "M" shaped wire connector can be used in a number of ways limited only by the imagination as illustrated in figures 3 and 4.

Figure 3

Connecting the corner and stopping the stay climbers.

16mm polypipe can be used to insulate steel posts as illustrated in Figure 5. Thousands of these have been in service on the writer's property for over 12 years and have proved fault free. 2mm to 2.5mm soft wire should be used to tie them in place.

Figure 4

16mm poly pipe insulator on back of star steel post. Long lasting, reliable and cheap.

Larger poly pipe can be split to insulate a live wire without cutting as shown in Figure 6. Properly done, this method is trouble free.

Figure 5

Split polythene pipe insulator. Overlap must face downward to shed water.

Porcelain cotton reels are commonly available in two sizes. The larger ones make a cheap and satisfactory end insulator for 2.5mm wire. The correct method of tying wire is shown in Figure 7.

Figure 6

Correct and incorrect method of tying cotton reel and insulator. The double loop can crush insulator.

© 1985 A.C.G.A.