When raising livestock on a ranch, you want to ensure that you are not disturbing any natural habitats or jeopardizing the well-being of other wild animals in the area. It becomes your responsibility to create a safe border that separates your ranch from the wilderness; this will keep the wildlife from harm and prevent them from getting hung up in your fence or gate. Here are some prime examples of how to build a fence with wildlife in mind.
Owning a ranch in the countryside provides you with the ability to own a larger amount of livestock. To protect your livestock, it is essential that you corral them within your property’s boundaries. Wire fences are especially beneficial in this regard. The wire you choose should be thick and strong enough to both deter livestock from escaping and prevent other wildlife from entering the enclosure. You should stay away from barbed wire of any kind, as the wildlife could get caught up in it and seriously harm themselves.
Spacing is also another issue. If the wires of the fence are too close together, smaller livestock such as chickens, pigs, and sheep will not be able to graze happily; however, if they are too far apart, you risk your larger livestock getting out of the ranch, so it’s crucial to maintain an even distance when installing the wires. This distance of wire will also keep wild pests like foxes, weasels, wolves, and wildcats out of your ranch.
You also do not want to place your posts and wiring too high, as you want wild animals to have the ability to clear the fence without damaging it or themselves. You likely won’t be able to keep out wildlife entirely—they’ll need to cross over your property at some point or another. However, you still want to protect the wildlife and your livestock as much as possible. Creating a fence that is just high enough that wildlife can scale it if necessary will keep all animals as safe as possible.
You’ll also need to work with the lay of the land to determine how you want to set up your posts in valleys and on hills. Generally, hills require less height with fencing, and valleys need more height, so you’ll have to adjust accordingly. If you don’t have the correct measurements, you might find yourself with a fence that is too tall and weak or too short and frequently being trampled. As a result, you may end up repairing and replacing your fence frequently.
You want to ensure that your livestock and the wildlife can see the fencing so that they don’t run into it and injure themselves. If an animal runs into the fence while moving at a full sprint, they could end up severely damaging the fence and harming themselves. So, make sure that your wire is thick enough and the posts are visible enough that they can be seen from a distance along. There should be no confusion that there is a fence in place at this point.
If you live in a rural area and want to do your part to protect the wildlife that surrounds your property, you should keep these rules in mind when building a fence. This instructional guide on how to build a fence with wildlife in mind will keep all animals safe, whether they’re domesticated and live on your ranch or not.