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Equine Fencing & Building

Options
Scott S. McKendrick
Coordinator
Statewide Small Acreage & Equine
Programs

Thanks to
Living on the Land
Dr. Pat Evans
Dr. Craig Burrell

What kind of fence do I


want?

USU, Logan, UT

Fencing considerations
Balance looks, functionality and
economics
Safety of animals and people
Installed or do-it-yourself
Life expectancy
Annual maintenance costs

Fencing for Small Acreages


What are you fencing in?
What do the neighbors have over the
fence?
An old timer described a good fence as
being horse high, bull strong and hog
tight.
Will the animals injure themselves on the
fence?

Fencing types
Type depends on:

CC&Rs
Purpose
Soil type
Terrain
Weather
Safety
Construction costs
Availability of power
Maintenance requirements
Visual impact

Missoula Conservation District, MT

Good Fencing
Visible
Not prone to cause
injury
Inhibits horse from
trying to go through or
over
Inhibits injury if horse
gets caught in it
No corners

Bad Fencing

Not as visible
Not sturdy
Materials cause injury
Does not inhibit horse
from attempting to go
through or over
Corners

Materials

Post and rail


Vinyl
High tensile wire
Barbed wire
Electric

Metal
Hog wire
Horse wire
Rubber

Post and Rail


Materials
Wood
Vinyl
Polyethylene

Post and Rail


Wood Fencing
Pros
Cons
What is the difference
between these two
fences?

Post and Rail Cont.

Alleyways and Trees

Rounded Ends

Wood Fences are sturdy but


require maintenance.

Wood rail or post


Cost
$6/ft materials
$3/ft labor

Pros
Visually appealing
Handles heavy snowfall
Can be adjusted or small
animals by adding mesh

Cons

High maintenance
Lifetime?
Need additional fencing materials for small animals
May need hot wire for livestock

USU, Logan, UT

Post and Rail


Vinyl Fencing
Pros
Cons
Cost

Vinyl fencing is attractive.

Vinyl 3 rail or 4 rail


Cost
$5/ft Materials
$3.50/ft labor

Pros
Visually appealing
Low Maintenance
Last many years?

www.ncvinyl.com

Cons
Expensive
3 rail may not be best
choice for horses

USU, Logan, UT

Post and Rail


Polyethylene
Round Rails
Stainless steel wire
embedded below
surface
Temperature resistant
Safety
Cost

Chain link: 6 ft
Cost
$4.50/ft materials
$2.50/ft labor

Pros

Security
Good for small animals
Low maintenance
Long lifetime
Can get colors to blend with surroundings

Cons
Not typically used with large animals
May not mesh with surroundings
May be regulated by CC&Rs

USU, Logan, UT

High Tensile
High-Tensile
Polymer Fences
Pros
Cons

4 to 10 Strand smooth wire

Cost
$0.75$1.30/ ft, depending on number of wires
Pros
4 to 5 strand good for horses
10 strand will
contain all large
livestock and
exclude large wildlife
Durable
Can be electrified
Cons
Expensive
Requires routine maintenance
www.kiwifence.com

Mesh wire is a popular alternative.

Woven wire
Cost
$1.15-$1.30 per foot

Pros
Readily available
Good for sheep add 1 - 2
strands of barbed wire at top for
cattle

www.farmphoto.com

Cons
Expensive
Requires routine
maintenance

www.farmphoto.com

Poultry netting

Cost
1 inch round holes,
48 inch high
150 ft rolls-$54.99

Pros

Inexpensive
Lightweight
Can be used with existing fences
Good for small animals
Good for small wildlife exclusion

Cons
Low strength will stretch and/or collapse by itself
Not effective for large animals or livestock
Needs frequent monitoring and maintenance

USU, Logan, UT

Horse Woven Wire

Hog Wire
Pros
Cons

Wire Mesh
Diamond Mesh
Square Knot
Mesh

Electric fence
Cost
$1.50/ft materials
$2.50/ft labor

Pros

Portable
Inexpensive
Versatile
Can make an existing
fence more effective

Cons
Difficult to see
Dangerous to people (children) and wildlife
Maintenance?

USU, Logan, UT

www.agry.purdue.edu/ext

Electric ribbon

Cost

Vinyl post $4.59


1 inch ribbon $.15/ft
T-posts 6 $2.50
Insulators $.15 each

Pros
Versatile
Easy to install and modify
Can be used to make existing
fence more effective
Easier to see than other types
of electric fencing

Cons
Cost and availability of
electricity or solar source
Maintenance
Not a good choice for a
permanent fence
USU, Logan, UT

New Zealand electric fencing


Cost
5 wire fence $0.30 to
$0.60/linear ft

Pros
Versatile
Eliminates grounding out
on foliage
Reduces fire danger

Cons
Powerful shock produced

UCES

Electric
Many types
Need charger

Electric fencing - temporary


Cost
Variable

Pros
Great for interior fencing
Portable - reels
Inexpensive

Cons
Can be difficult to see - color
variations ease this problem
Can be dangerous

www.agry.purdue.edu/ext

Electric Fences are good for


temporary situations and for
dividing pastures

Prefabricated panels

Metal 2 inch round tubing panels


12 feet $52.91
Gates approximately $70.00

Cattle and hog panels


16 feet $13.99

Pros

Durable and strong


Good for large livestock
Panels allow for different configurations
Low maintenance

Cons
Expensive
Less visually appealing
Not good for small animals

USU, Logan, UT

Bracing

Steel fencing is durable.

Metal Fencing
Contours with land
Pros
Cons

Barb wire is dangerous for horses.

Barbed Wire
Not horse fencing!!
Use electric line to
keep off
Visibility?

Barbed wire 4 strand


Cost
$1.50/ft materials
$2.50/ft labor

Pros
Low cost
Easy to install
Fairly low maintenance

Cons

USU, Logan, UT

Dangerous to people, livestock


and wildlife
Not suitable for horses
Not useful for small animals
Can be damaged by large wildlife
www.agry.purdue.edu/ext

Rubber Fencing
Made from belting or rubber strips from old
tires and conveyor belts
Generally is not used much anymore
Sags
Loose fibers have caused colic

Jackleg

Cost
$2.50/ft

Pros
Good in areas where it is hard to dig or
drive posts
Visually appealing
Durable
Handles heavy snowfall
Can be adapted to marshy or wet
areas
Low maintenance

Cons
High labor and materials costs during
construction
UV stability?

NRCS, Bozeman, MT

Privacy wood
Cost
$10/ft materials
$5/ft labor

Pros
Can be visually appealing
Good for small animals
Provides visual block

Cons

Not typically used for large animals


Expensive
High maintenance
Often short lifetime

USU, Logan, UT

What kind of shelter


do I want for my
animals?
What kind of shelter
do my animals
need?

Considerations for shelter


Provide adequate shelter - adequate for
local weather conditions
summer
winter

Durability
Maintenance costs
Visually appealing
COSTS

Shelter:
Can be simple
or elaborate
Costs vary
widely

Motel 7

USU, Logan, UT

The Ritz

USU, Logan, UT

Pole structures

Cost
Relatively low
$8 to 15/ft2
Pros
Low cost
Easy to install
and maintain
Easy to clean
Cons
Basic shelter
Consider placement
Less protection
than a barn
Noise

USU, Logan, UT

USU, Logan, UT

Metal buildings

Cost
$15 to 30/ft2
Concrete floor may be 40% of cost
Pros
Built on-site
Versatile
Low maintenance
Moderate cost
More protection than pole structures
Cons
Not as visually pleasing
May not mesh with surroundings
Summer heat may be a problem
Concrete floor is this good for hooves?

USU, Logan, UT

Specialized structures barns, etc.

Cost
$35 to $50/ft2
Pros
Convenience
Visual appealing
Designed specifically to meet needs
Can be built to mesh with existing structures and landscape
Increase in property value
Cons
Expensive
Constant upkeep
Cannot be moved
Resale can be limited

USU, Logan, UT

NRCS, Bozeman, MT

Ventilation
Why is it important?
What builds up without proper ventilation?
What kinds of climate is ventilation very
important?

Types of Ventilation

Windows
Doors
High ceiling
High pitch roof
Dormers, cupolas,
vents at highest
part

Ventilation Considerations
Winter
Spring and summer
Ventilation properties of
--cold air vs. warm air

Natural Ventilation System: Cold


Barn

Natural Ventilation System:


Warm Barn

Warm Barn, Fan Ventilated


Fully
insulated
Exhaust
fans

Steps for good ventilation


Air exchange
Air distribution
Changes of air

Improving Air Quality


Hay
Quality
Storage
Inlet/vents
Outlets
Ultraviolet light

Food for thought

Unnatural environment
Horses do not mind the cold
Give as much turn out as possible
Horses need movement
Blanket rather than heat barn