Friday, May 9, 2008

More Fence, Please.

Some days, it seems that the only tasks a farmer has is to put up fence, repair fence and plan for more fence. Where we farm, in the cove, a fence is necessary to protect our chickens and goats from predators. Since we practice rotational grazing, as the goats or chickens finish grazing one pen, it's time to move them to another.

We opted for the "do it as we go" method which means we build new pens as we need them. It also means we don't have a giant cash outlay all at once. We thought it would mean we wouldn't have fencing materials laying about, but that hasn't worked out like we thought.

It's time for two more pens to go up. We've decided to separate the girl and boy goats, so that we don't have any baby goat surprises. The goats have also eaten quite a bit of the pasture in the two existing pens, so it's time to move.

I have to say, putting up fencing is not a job I enjoy. I would rather that the fence brownies came and did it, but it's got to be done. The fence brownies don't apparently exist.

First we measure out the pen size and locate the corner posts. Then we locate the gate posts. Thirdly, we put in other posts as needed. Then it's time to string the wire - a job best done with several people and vehicle. With the tractor needing a part, it's also time to order the part and repair the tractor, so it can be used to stretch the fence tightly. Finally we put up the gates and open the pasture up for grazing.

Wish us luck.
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