Hey there, does anyone know or have any experience with keeping sheep and dexters together?
What type of fencing would be best? Both as a permanent perimeter fence and for portable electric fencing (ie two strands?)
Its a tough combo. The electric fence that will hold cows, wont hold sheep. The solid fence that will hold sheep, will get smashed by the cows. Tough combo.
I would recommend a woven wire perimenter fence, built strong enough to hold the cattle. Electric alone is not an adequate perimeter fence, unless you really dont like your neighbors.
In some ways you would be better off keeping the sheeps and cattle separate. Use single strand electric fence for the cattle paddocks, and electronet for the sheep paddocks.
Really it depends on the performance goals you have for each group of animals. For example, if you were milking the cows but had the sheeps for meat, then you would move the cattle paddocks every day, which would be easy with single strand electric. Then you would have the sheep electronet paddocks follow the cows, but only get rotated weekly, to save on labor. Electronet is no fun to move every day. Just an idea for an example.
You need good perimeter fence--either woven or 4+ wire high tensile. Depends on the terrain and size of property which is best. Big acres with mild terrain, high tensile is hard to beat. Smaller acreage or steep terrain changes and woven works better. I really like high tensile with every other wire electrified.
paddock fence--buy the good plastic posts with 8 wire heights so you can adjust to what works. Buy the good poly--at least 6 conductor and preferably 9 conductor. Buy an extra spool just in case you need to run three, which you might for lambs, sheep, calves, and cows.
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It really depends on how much land you're having to fence in, what your budget looks like, and how you plan on grazing your animals.
If it were me, and I was going to fence lets say 30 acres to be grazed rotationally, I would put up high tensile electric perimeter fence.
This is where an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Your perimeter fence will be your free safety, its your last line of defense. Make sure that you use good posts, make sure that your wire is tight, make sure that your wire is close enough to the ground to deter sheep and make sure that they are close enough together to prevent escapes.
Also, you will want to make up some kind of schedule for chopping down weeds that get into your perimeter fence and for checking the tension in your wire.
You might also want to look into some method of deterring weeds from growing up around your fence.
Interior fencing can be movable poly. Your animals will get the hang of it.
If your budget allows you can go with a good woven wire perimeter fence with a strand or two of hot wire to discourage pushing.
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