1-Strand Sheep Fencing – How We Made It Work For Our Operation

When we bought our first flock of sheep 16 years ago we had 12 leased farms and were being overrun with sprouts and weeds. The cattle would eat some of these undesirable plants but we needed more pres

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13 thoughts on “1-Strand Sheep Fencing – How We Made It Work For Our Operation

  1. Do you ever strip graze with lambs at side or does this work for only mature animals? I would imagine lambs would just duck under the wire? We currently use electronet to graze but it is very pricey.

    1. We used this single wire rotation in lambing season and moved them forward every day with it. The lambs stayed with their mothers. Now that the lambs are mostly grown, they have grown up with respect for the single wire fence. It really is amazing, they could easily duck under the wire or hop over it if they wanted to. We do not let our sheep get hungry which helps in their behavior of not getting out.

  2. I ran meat goats with a single hot wire 10 inches high under my 3 and 4 barbed wire cattle fence. The goats were born on a hot pasture. You fry them when they are little and they respect the fence. I brought in some outside goats and they flowed through my fence like water. What a wreck!

  3. Great to see an article about sheep!
    I wasn’t clear from the article how you are handling water and shelter in the strip grazing system. Could you tell us more about that?

    1. We use ponds mostly on the sheep paddocks. We actually start the fence about 1 foot out in the water and run the single polybraid paddock out from the pond. Each pond may have 5-6 paddocks feeding off of that one pond. Our sheep do not use shelters. They are much healthier outside.

      1. About how many head of sheep are you running like this? I have a significantly smaller farm – and smaller flock (only 5 head on 2 heavily wooded acres) and I’m trying to figure out paddock sizes for rotational grazing. My farm is permanently perimeter fenced and they presently roam all of it, so escape isn’t a huge deal, but I’d still like to consider rotating them to put more pressure on my thick brush and keep them off where I seed new pasture behind them.

        1. We have 250 in our ewe and wether flock. Our ram group ranges from 5-25 animals being rotated with one polybraid in our silvopasture areas.

    2. We constuct temporary paddocks in a wagon wheel design out from our ponds. Our sheep use our woods and cedar thickets for shelter in adverse weather.

  4. 2 Questions:

    1. Have you ever done that with horned sheep?

    2. How do you handle your rams in a pasture situation?

    1. Yes, some of our sheep have horns, no problems with them staying in behind one wire.

      Our rams are also broke to one single polybraid. The rams are 2 miles from our ewes. I do not think the single wire would hold a ram if he heard or smelled a ewe!

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