Pics: Cost-effective temporary sheep fencing options on show

The use of temporary fences will allow sheep farmers to make better use of grass on their farms in the lead up to housing, according to Teagasc’s Philip Creighton.

The Teagasc Research Officer spoke about the different temporary fencing options currently available to sheep farmers at a recent farm walk on John Byrne’s farm in Bagnelstown, Co. Carlow.

Grassland management on sheep farms, he said, really begins in autumn and the use of temporary fences can allow farmers to get a sufficient clean out of their paddocks without having a negative impact on ewe performance.

Along with being beneficial in the autumn, Creighton also said that the use of temporary fences throughput the year can allow farmers to sub-divide paddocks to make better use of grass.

Teagasc's Philip Creighton speaking at the farm walk
Teagasc’s Philip Creighton speaking at the farm walk

This is also beneficial from a grass building point of view, as any section of a larger field can be taken out for surplus bales.

While the temporary sub-divisions also allows ewes and lambs to be moved every three to four days to access fresh grass.

What options are available?

The 40 farmers who attended the farm walk were also given the opportunity to take a closer look at some of the temporary sheep fencing options.

Farmers got to see first hand how they could possibly sub-divide their fields using three or four strands of poly wire and plastic stakes.

According to Teagasc, the cost of this option comes in at around €1-1.50/m.

Three strands of poly wire and plastic posts

Sheep netting

Electrified sheep fencing was also on display at the farm walk and according to Teagasc, this method of paddock sub-division costs €1.90/m.

Electrified sheep netting

The Gallagher Smart fence

The Gallagher Smart Fence was also on show. This method of fencing costs approximately €2.90/m and it consists of four strands of polywire and integrated plastic poles.

Creighton described this fence as the convenience option, as the four strands of wire and the plastic posts are all wound up on the reel at the same time.

The Gallagher Smart Fence