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Make the most of grassland productivity using electric fencing

Continuing pressure on farm gate prices means effective utilisation of grass productivity is paramount for increased efficiency of livestock.

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Using electric fencing can allow for an increase in stocking rates
Using electric fencing can allow for an increase in stocking rates
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Make the most of grassland productivity using electric fencing

Rob Massey, managing director of Tru-Test electric fencing says that using an alternative to conventional post and wire fencing can prove more profitable for livestock farmers.

 

“Being able to move a fence, quickly and easily, as seasonal growing conditions change, means you are much more likely to graze grass at the optimum time.” says Mr Massey.

 

He explains that being able to identify short windows of regrowth and successfully managing them will significantly influence the productivity of that grassland. It even allows for stocking rates to be increased significantly, and potentially doubled in some cases, increasing productivity per hectare by up to 60 per cent.

Electric fences can be moved quickly and easily.
Electric fences can be moved quickly and easily.

“Set up costs are obviously much lower with an electric fence than a traditional permanent fence – around 90p/m compared with £6-8/m for posts, stock netting and barbed wire, however this is far from the only reason farmers should consider electric fencing options.”

 

Mr Massey says there are many other benefits for using electric fencing as an alternative to conventional methods:

  • They can be used to deter animals – Natural England have carried out trials and concluded that wires should be set at four, six, eight and twelve inches above ground level to exclude badgers from areas of the farm.
  • Animal safety – animals are less likely to damage an electric fence as they usually do not touch it more than once which reduces maintenance.
  • Can be moved quickly and easily

Mr Massey encourages farmers to talk to each other, discuss designs, get advice and research the most suitable system for their farm.

 

However, whichever conclusion is drawn, it is imperative to invest in quality components, he says, this will lead to less maintenance problems, and increase the life expectancy of the fence.

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