How to protect your livestock from foxes

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  • By Electric Fence Online
How to protect your livestock from foxes

Foxes are funny little animals. On the one hand, they’re portrayed as these beautiful, cuddly creatures, immortalised by famous hand puppets and children’s books. On the other, they’re known as crafty, cunning and conniving little terrors with a penchant for mischief.

Lovable or not, you definitely don’t want foxes anywhere near your livestock – be that sheep, chickens or pet rabbits. You want to deter them as much as possible.

Because if a fox gets into a coop or into a field with animals that are easy prey, it will use all of its predatorial abilities to kill.

They’re smart, they’re incredibly adaptive to their environment, and they won’t let a simple little fence get in their way.

That’s why you need effective fox deterrent fencing to protect your livestock.

  • Illuminated fox deterrent - Foxes are typically scared away by humans, and they associate lights with humans. These FoxLights emit random LED flashes, shining in different areas at different times, to recreate the movement of a torch and confuse foxes. They will help deter them from getting close.

  • Ultrasonic fox deterrent – Like most animals, ultrasonic noises are an irritant to foxes, and if they hear a sound at a specific ultrasonic range, they will turn away and avoid an area.

  • Electric fencing for foxes – For a physical barrier against foxes, electric fences surround a perimeter – big or small – and give a short, small shock to any fox that brushes against the wire.

  • Electric netting for foxes – To protect smaller areas like chicken runs and rabbit hutches, electrified netting makes a near impenetrable barrier for foxes.

 

Each type of fox deterrent fencing has different applications and different uses. Each works in different ways to prevent a fox from getting close and to protect your livestock from attack.

 

The best option for you will depend on your set-up.

 

Which fox deterrent fencing is best for my land and my animals?

 

Illuminated and ultrasonic fox deterrents

 

If you want to protect any area from foxes, then an illuminated fox deterrent is a great place to start. Foxlights can be set up around a large outdoor field – or positioned right next to a chicken coop.

 

They will deter foxes immediately when they sense any movement and are battery operated, so you don’t need a mains connection. This is ideal if you want to position them in a distant field. Activated automatically at dusk, they’ll trick any attacking predator into thinking there’s human movement nearby.

 

But if a fox soon realises the lights are just lights and there isn’t anyone around, they’ll learn to ignore them. They don’t offer a physical barrier against fox attacks.

 

The same is true for ultrasonic fox deterrents. They can be placed anywhere – on existing fence posts, on trees, or at the side of animal shelters. They can be configured to emit a sound that only affects foxes too – so any other wildlife won’t be disturbed.

 

However, some foxes may choose to ignore the irritating noise and overcome any discomfort to still attack, especially if they’re hungry.

 

Electric fencing for foxes

 

Standard electric fencing can be used to deter a wide range of animals from entering a designated area, or stop some animals leaving a specific field or garden.

 

Nowadays it’s extremely portable and easy to set-up yourself, so you can create an electric fence anywhere you like. It’s easy to carry into distant fields and can be powered by batteries or small solar panels if you need to set it up somewhere away from a mains connection.

 

It’s great for large areas like paddocks, if you want to protect sheep or other livestock from fox attacks. On average, it’s 50% cheaper than wooden fencing too. You can even run electric fencing along a wooden fence to make use of existing poles.

 

The trick to making sure an electric fence is an effective deterrent against foxes is to have both a low bottom line and a high top line. This way a fox will get a shock if they investigate on the ground, and a shock if they try to climb over the top.

 

Any shocks foxes receive are minor and designed to make them think twice about coming back. They won’t harm the animals.

 

Electric netting for foxes

 

But because foxes are so cunning, they may find a way around, under or through an electric fence that just consists of two or three electrified wires.

 

If you want to provide a more comprehensive protection against foxes, then electrified netting is often the best choice. With a wire mesh covering an entire coop or rabbit hutch, there’s no way a fox can get through without getting shocked.

 

Electric netting can also be used around a small sheep paddock. If a fox tries to go through or over, they will get shocked. For larger areas, electric netting can prove a costly option, but if you have wire mesh in place already, you could electrify that with the right equipment.

 

Combining fox deterrents for maximum protection

 

There are many different ways to stop foxes from prowling your land and attacking any animals you keep – whether they’re for commercial or domestic purposes.

 

Electric fencing of one kind of another is the most effective way to deter foxes in your garden, your paddock or your fields.

 

But to provide the best protection for your livestock and scare away predators as much as possible, we recommend combining fox deterrent fencing for maximum impact.

 

This might include having illuminated Foxlights around a distant perimeter and then electrified netting just around where your animals sleep at night. Or it might mean having a primary and secondary fence around a field, both electrified to provide an extra barrier against an attack.

 

There are lots of options to choose from. See which fox deterrent fence might be best for you here.

 

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