Livestock fencing is a critical barrier you rely on to keep your animals in and threats out. Weaknesses and failures can cause major problems for any farmer. All types of fencing, from hi-tensile to barbed to wire to wood, are susceptible to damage. Here we outline the major categories of threats to your livestock fencing and how to address them.
- Your Livestock. The first, and greatest, threat to your fence are the very creatures it was built to contain. If you own cattle, you know those big creatures like to rub on the fencing. Goats are the raptors of farm animals, constantly testing fence limits and hoping to find weakness. To protect your investment, you need to ensure you have the right style of fence for the animals you keep. Read our article Farm Fence Types and Tips by Livestock Species for a good reference guide.
- Predators. Predation is a tremendous threat to your animals. Your fence needs to be big enough to keep your animals in, but fine enough to keep predators out. Predatory animals, like coyotes and foxes, are adept at both hopping and digging under fencing if it’s not tall enough or secured to the ground.
- Mother Nature. There is no break from the elements for your fencing. Wood is susceptible to rot and cracking. Metal can rust and weaken. Protect your fencing by using the most durable materials appropriate for your livestock, as well as your geography.
Your fence needs to be inspected seasonally to ensure it remains viable. If you find weaknesses, your animals and their predators will too. Replace and repair vulnerabilities and damages as you find them. If you let them accrue over time, you’re more likely to end up needing to replace the entire fence.
- Poor Construction. A livestock fence needs to be installed properly the first time with the right materials, tools, and fasteners. Your posts must be spaced properly, wires fastened tight, and corners must be strong. Constructing or repairing a fence using high-quality materials, such as the BECK® Fence Stapling System, which includes air-driven fence stapling that gives superior holding power and corrosion protection for wire to wood applications, will ensure your fence lasts and your livelihood remains protected.