Wildlife Control Using 3-D Fencing : Bush Line

Collaborating Producer: Lawrence & Lori Andruchiw, Spirit River

Research Coordinator: Dr. Akim Omokanye

From: Peace Country Beef & Forage Association 2012 Annual Report


Wildlife can cause great destruction on a cattle producer`s property by simply trying to eat. Fence lines can be torn down and a large quantity of feed can be lost and/or damaged causing potential financial strain. Therefore, a system designed by the Peace River Forage Association of British Columbia (PRFABC), coined ``3- D Fencing`` was developed to help mitigate these losses. The premise behind this fence is that it will deter wildlife mainly elk, deer and moose from entering an area that a producer is either trying to store feed in or use as a feeding ground for their cattle. The fence is composed of a 2 fence setup that compels wildlife to stop and look before jumping. Due to the fact that the fence is composed of height, depth and width (hence 3-D), wildlife tend to be more careful and will approach with caution. This is a result of the wildlife's eye placement on the side of their head, giving them poor depth perception. The key, however, is to have the fence electrified so when they check out the fence with their noses, they receive a shock that will leave them looking for an alternative area. PRFABC has tested many types of fencing areas from bush lines to hay yards to grain bags. All areas found animals to respect the 3-D fence and search for another trail, feeding place or bed.


Objective:

The purpose of this “3D fence” is to keep the local wildlife (elk & deer) from crossing through the bush line into the field, which will reduce the amount of feed lost over the winter and increase the amount available for the cattle herd. In addition, this fence may also help to re-route the wildlife from this particular path.


Method:

A portable fence was constructed, using supplies already present at the farm, along a bush line in a paddock away from the home farm site. The fence is considered to be a “3D fence” in which a 5-wire (barbed wire) fence that is currently in existence was be added to by a 1-wire (smooth wire) fence, which was constructed on the outside of the 5-wire fence, approximately 3 feet away. This 1-wire fence was electrified and 250 feet in length.


Results and Discussion:

In order to determine the success of the fence in keeping wildlife out, measurements were taken, which were documented through photos and identified if there is there was a presence of wildlife tracks around or in the 3-D fenced area. The producer would was also able to comment on the what was observed first hand. From these observations, the producer noted that the regular wildlife traffic had chosen another path during the 2011/2012 winter. This helped to reduce the impact on the pasture and reduce the amount of feed lost. The original idea was that if this was successful, there may be the option to move the portable fence to another problem area for the following year. A field day was held, in conjunction to the farm’s corn project in the summer of 2012.

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