5 Electric Fences

High-tensile wire is vulnerable to fire, and (if barbed) a risk for cranes. So if wetlands must be fenced, a solution could be electric fencing, potentially solar-powered. An electric strand can also greatly increase effectiveness of pig exclusion fencing (external site, pdf 1.05MB). But vegetation management – essential for electric fences and cranes – can be a serious business cost in the tropics.

electric fence

↑ Solar-powered electric fence near Carnarvon, WA. The controller is in the old fridge (R Gray)

↓ Farm wetland protected by 6 strand plain HT wire + 1 live wire, with timber rails at cattle water access (SE Victoria, cranesnorth)

electric fence

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The Kimberley design

Here with grateful thanks to a WA correspondent, are specs for the ‘Kimberley steel and porcelain low-level fire-resistant electric fence’ – no barb, and with the bottom wire at 52.5 cm, young Brolgas and Sarus Cranes should be able to walk under the fence for at least their first month.


Comments and suggestions on Crane-friendly Fencing are welcome, contact details here». Feedback is especially welcome from landowners who have tried varied styles of electric fencing combined with vegetation management around or near wetlands, dams or swamps.

Do please read the Disclaimer page carefully before applying ideas or advice from this site. And to discover why wetland fencing – including fencing promoted for environmental reasons – can create problems for cranes and other large waterbirds, see Fencing Intro and Fences 1: Issues and Risks. Fences 2: Decision Guide gives checklists that factor cranes and other large waterbirds into wetland fencing decisions.

Next: 6 | Fencing downloads and links»

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