Monday, September 14, 2020

Perennial problems with electric fences

I had more excitement this morning than I wanted.

Sprite's cattle decided that they wanted to be in the next paddock and in the garden.

Since they weren't acting like they were heading to the road, I had time to be deliberate.

I drove fence posts to subdivide the paddock they were in. 

I turned off the energizer

I spread shelled corn to pull them into the half I wanted them in.

I ran a wire at 15 inches and baling twine at 36 for visibility.

I repaired the stretch they had pushed through.

I turned the energizer back on.

I moved the water and salt.

I refilled the water.

Then I checked the fence. No voltage.


I disconnected most of the fence with the knife-blade switches I installed earlier this year. Still no voltage.

I finally found it. Something (a deer?) had pushed the woven wire fence into the barbed wire. A barb caught and held the fence. A quick tap with the screwdriver and the hot wire popped off.

I would venture that half of my shorts are related to this issue. The Captain was frugal to a fault. He was big on re-purposing fence wire and simply HAD to reuse barbed wire.

I think it is time to invest about $60-to-$120, strip out the barbed and run smooth, galvanized.


  1. Makes lots of sense. Your time IS worth money!

    1. A car swats one of those 800 pound steers and it is going to cost way more than $120 to make it right.

  2. Worth the time when you consider that it will also force you to take a long careful look at the fence line and surrounding hazards.

  3. My experience with cows and shelled corn is that if they don't take the time to chew it well it goes right through and the raccoons get a corn feast. But that's Texas cows for you!


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