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Thread: Fence height for moose

  1. #1
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    Default Fence height for moose

    Hey folks. I'm hoping to get serious about growing our own food this year, and I want to plow up some of the yard (25'x50' to get started) to plant vegetables on. I know we're going to have moose issues because they come in the yard all the time all year round. I'm thinking of putting up a 4" hog wire fence around my food plot to keep them out. How high do I have to make that fence to keep moose from stepping or jumping over it?

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    Member Tearbear's Avatar
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    I think 4" is way too short...you must have some pretty small moose in your area.
    "Grin and Bear It"

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    My folks have an 8' chain link and that doesn't keep 'em out...what ever you build make it stronger than your standard chain link as they can just run right through it, get your garden, then run right through it again when they leave.... what a mess they made....
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    Well if 8 ft won't do it, then nothing will.

    So what constitutes "DLP"? If a moose is eating your food plot that you plan to feed your family with, is that considered "property" that you can defend? What happens if you kill a moose in your food garden and then call Fish and Game?

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    Member tjm's Avatar
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    I think 8' would work if it is strong ...

    On entry momma tried to jump it but didn't even come close to clearing it, part of her landed on top of the fence and just smashed it to the ground...

    After momma and baby had their fill they just wandered around looking for a way out, finally momma just ran right through it with baby following right behind...
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    Unless you're going to build The Great Wall, fencing will not work.

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    Why not try 2 to three strands of electric fence from 6 ft to 3 ft heights along with the fence panels?

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    Quote Originally Posted by FL2AK-Old Town View Post
    Well if 8 ft won't do it, then nothing will.

    So what constitutes "DLP"? If a moose is eating your food plot that you plan to feed your family with, is that considered "property" that you can defend? What happens if you kill a moose in your food garden and then call Fish and Game?
    Call Fish & Game and see what they have to say about shooting a moose while defending your broccoli. Electric wire, ( like Riverrat mentioned ) along with the main fence should help to discourage them.
    "Grin and Bear It"

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    The Brown-shirt Troopers will typically tell you that DLP doesn't apply to gardens, which they have regarded in past conversations as tantamount to baiting moose.

    With electric fencing, you can go Cadillac/Limousine, or you can go Chevette/Yugo. A nice treated-wood-post with welded wire, which also incorporates electric wire at select heights (3', 5', and 7' for example) is the more deluxe, stable and labor/material intensive method.

    The hardware stores will also often have 10' tall fence posts of corrugated metal, specifically made to hold electric wire, with plastic insulator brackets that clip into place at what ever heights you want them to, to hold your wire, such as the previously mentioned heights, for example. Driving the 10' metal stake-like posts into the ground 3' will provide the stability to keep them upright under most soil conditions.

    You should have about 3 (or more) standard grounding rods placed at least 30' from your house (to not interfere in the grounding your home has), and the transformers for the fencing come in a variety of 'calibers.'

    When I went in to get my transformer, I had a running battle going with a family of moose that has been here as long as we have, and then some (though they took about 5 years to finally locate my then-prize-winning broccoli patch)... I told the fellow at the feed Store that I wanted a transformer hot enough that when momma moose touched it, I could smell moose burgers cooking. He gave me a transformer rated to 15+ miles of fence to run three strands of wire, totaling about 587'.

    We went the labor and material intensive approach of wooden posts, rails, and gussets every 6'-8' with 2"x4" welded wire fencing (a 4' tall fence and a three ft. tall fence, with rails at 4' and 7', using electrical staples to hold the fencing to rails and gussets), and brackets set at the earlier-recommended heights, with nails (still needing to finish that multi-year project).

    My neighbors were present when a yearling touched their less-labor-intensive metal post (with three wire strand) fence; ever see a moose break dance? The thing was torqued off enough that it cleared their nicely manicured lawn for about a 3' x 3' sq. area., but decided that there were easier vittles in the neighborhood and left.. (*Don't approach a moose immediately after its touched a 'hot' wire and grounded it out on an electric fence. They're NOT in a good mood at that time...)

    You can also go one step better (as we're doing) and use a solid ground on top of the fence, safely separated from your 'hot' wire at the top outside of the fence; when the moose sticks their nose over the fence, it makes positive contact with both the hot and the ground, leaving a more lasting impression re. there being easier or more attainable vittles in the 'hood.

    I did inquire at one point during the purchase re. the safety of one of my then-younger kids touching the thing while 'hot.' The Feed Store dude replied, "They'll only do it once."

    In consideration of his comment it occurred to me that there's a couple ways to interpret that statement, but I'm pretty certain he was referring to the learning curve, rather than mortality.

    Lastly, I don't know if it's a real threat or not, but I've always believed that if you're running hot wire fencing, keeping the shrubbery and undergrowth away from making contact is likely a good idea during the dry months. Not sure if it's a real issue, but I don't feel compelled to roll the proverbial dice on that; apologizing to neighbors I rarely speak with for burning down their homes is something I try to avoid at all costs.. It'd be a doubling down on the humiliation slot.

  10. #10

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    Like it has been posted. A small electric fence will do a lot more good than a big fence .With the electric it makes them a winner in the 100 yard dash. Like Ruffle said they leave very few tracks after talking to Mr.Electric Fence.

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    The problem using a normal electrical fence charger is the hair on a moose insulate the moose from getting shock so you need something with a little more kick.

    I have a dog that comes into my yard and pissed on my things in the winter. A normal electrical fence will not shock that dog because of the snow. I made a charger using a ignition coil and a IC, it will jump a 2 inch space if turn up to full voltage. It will not kill the dog but it will get the message.

    Another thing you could use is a horn, moose don't like loud sounds.

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    http://www.electric-deer-fence.com/i...tion/index.htm

    An electric fence charger will work well in the winter, or rocky/sandy areas, IF it has grounded wires running along with the hot/charged wires. The target animal is a moose, get a charger that is good for cattle & horses. I've got a six foot copper rod driven into the ground for grounding, the soil there is mostly red clay, and it works very very well...doesn't matter if it's summer or winter, or how hairy the animal is. You can use the fencing itself ( if it is made from metal wire ) for the grounded part by hooking your fence to the negative connector of the charger...that's the set up I have...ground rod attached to the fence, a wire going from the negative to the fence, then hot/charged wires on insulators. I've had all kinds of entertainment from moose, bears, dogs, cats, & human beings. One of the most entertaining and remembered events...was when I witnessed the backwards somersaulting cats never knew they could do that.

    Good luck with your garden project.
    "Grin and Bear It"

  13. #13

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    A wet nose is what gets the shock, You need one strand of wire about nose level .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Bend View Post
    A wet nose is what gets the shock, You need one strand of wire about nose level .
    Yep. Moose assert their noses into chow, or potential chow, just like many critters.. even many of my family members..

    I go with the 3', 5' and 7' approach, as that's the general heights I see them come to the fence at, starting out with the brome hay in the yard, lifting their heads to about the 3' level and sniffing the contents of the garden, then raising up to the tops of the taller plants that run along the inside of my north fence line in the garden (taller plants like snow peas, corn, etc. I plant to the north, with many of my crops' beds running east-west for the sun to get at them all day, with shorter plants to the south, also often running east-west, and stepping up in height as the beds go north in progression). The 7' wire with the ground up top is for the final effort at reach over the fence to grab something; that's where the solid ground and hot wires are located about 4"-5" apart, with the solid ground on 2"-3" insulator brackets, coming off the top of a 2"x4" rail laid flat, and the hot wire extending off the edge of that top rail on 3"-5" insulators that come out more or less horizontally, with a slight upward angle due to the way the insulators lay when attached to a vertical surface.

    One of the great beauties of the electric fence approach is that it uses little to no electricity unless the ground and hot connection is completed; typically by the critter touching it. In which case the electrical usage lasts for all of a split second. When you're paying high utility rates or running a generator on expensive diesel fuel, THAT matters a lot.

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    I saw some of the metal post with insulator stuff at a Tractor Supply store in the lower 48 last week. I know what just you're talking about now. I wonder who, in Anchorage, sells that stuff, and what it might cost. (AK Mill and Feed?)

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    Quote Originally Posted by FL2AK-Old Town View Post
    I saw some of the metal post with insulator stuff at a Tractor Supply store in the lower 48 last week. I know what just you're talking about now. I wonder who, in Anchorage, sells that stuff, and what it might cost. (AK Mill and Feed?)
    Try Lowes for fence posts and fencing as well.
    BK

  17. #17

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    Fence Emporium of Ak. on Hemmer Rd. in Palmer has all types of material for fences and the electric fence parts .

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    I have a fencing contractor coming out tomorrow to give me an estimate, but I'm not even sure I know what to ask for... I was thinking a 6' cedar fence would be enough, but now that I'm reading this, I'm afraid that might not even be enough... Any advice from the seasoned gardners on here?

    This is my first time gardening outside California... We don't have moose in Sonoma County, so this whole thing is a new experience for me!

    Thanks in advance!

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    I have a 6ft pole fence around my back yard and it has worked reasonably well to deflect the moose migration pattern through my back yard. There has been an occasional cow stick her head through between a couple poles and exert enough pressure to break a pole or two. However the fence with a 100 lb German Shepherd on the inside has usually convinced them to go graze somewhere else...

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    I believe you want an 8' min height for a barrier fence (versus an electric fence), but this is somewhat determined by the size of the area that will be fenced and how exposed to moose it is. In my experience a smaller area will generally require a bit taller of a fence to dissuade them, especially if they can access all four sides.

    What you really want is to change their migration corridors away from your garden, so fewer moose are even tempted to test the fence. So keep that in mind as you plan exactly where the fence will go.

    It's easier to keep moose out of a larger area, if you can afford the fence.

    If a moose wants in, they can push through or jump over almost any fence I've ever seen. You are just trying to make it as unattractive as possible as they pass through or adjacent to your property, and eat the neighbor's garden instead.


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