I came across this article in Sundays paper and thought it was interesting and wanted to share it with you.
John Caccaro is the Warren County Extension Director here in Vicksburg and he wrote about using 3-D fences that would be key to turning away deer diners.
John said...as the seasons change, it is interesting to note how Extension Service clients’ priorities change.
By seasons, I am referring to both winter to spring, and from deer season to the off season.
As deer season approaches, we typically get calls about food plots and ways to attract the animals. Now that we are approaching spring and are planting ornamentals, trees and gardens, the focus has turned to keeping deer away. There is no doubt many Warren County residents have become frustrated with deer dining on their fruit trees, flowers, shrubs and gardens. One doesn’t necessarily have to live in a rural area for this to be a problem, either. Deer problems can pop up just about anywhere.
A colleague of mine got a call from a woman who asked him to list the plants deer won’t eat. He just said, “OK,” followed by a long pause. Thinking they had gotten disconnected, the lady said, “Hello, sir,” to which he responded, “Yes, ma’am. I’m still here. My point is that I’m not confident there are any plants deer won’t eat.”
Many experienced gardeners have come to the conclusion that the only sure deer barrier is a woven wire fence or solid wall too tall for deer to jump. Keep in mind deer can clear a fence up to 8 feet tall. Because that conclusion is usually cost prohibitive or aesthetically unpleasant, the best compromise is an electric fence. Electric fences work by persuading the deer to neither jump nor penetrate the fence.
Because electric fences deter the deer’s brain instead of the body, even the best electric fence will fail if it is installed at the wrong time on the wrong site and managed without an awareness of how a deer herd interacts with your area and the new fence.
Deer are creatures of habit. Excluding a deer herd from a food source to which they are already accustomed forces the herd to break this habit. So the first day, week, and month of denial - by fence - is the key period. Once a deer habit is broken, the change in feeding routines and locations is easier to maintain.
Deer do have an Achilles’ heel, though - poor depth perception. Knowing that can be a major benefit to understanding how proper construction of an electric 3-D fence can solve your problem. I saw lots of vegetable farms with 3-D electric fences last summer when I was touring rural North Carolina at our national county agents conference.
The fences look strange but are proved to work. The three dimension - width, height and depth - result from constructing one fence 3 feet in front of another. The outside perimeter fence can be a single strand electric wire 34-inches tall and the inside fence has two wires at 18- and 48-inches heights. The 3-D effect causes deer to stop, walk up slowly and check the fence out carefully with its nose. Once greeted with the strong electrical shock, the deer will decide to find another restaurant - possibly your neighbor’s garden.
You can e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more info if this interest you.