Building a Livestock Fence

Building a Livestock Fence image by Kevin Tuck

The Livestock Fence

Farmers and ranch owners use split rail fencing to keep their livestock confined. The wood they most commonly use for their fencing is cedar or chestnut which has been proven to be very strong wood for fencing. Split rail fencing is very cost effective and safe for use with livestock and it's easy to install. It rarely needs to be treated with any type of chemicals and it blends in with surroundings because of its rustic look and varying shapes and sizes. There is no need for concrete in the installation of livestock fencing, which makes for a much quicker installation. A permit may be required by the municipality for the installation of any type of fencing so consider this before starting the installation.

Installing the Fence

Livestock fences require a section by section process. The posts for livestock fencing should be installed 30 inches into the ground. The rails put in for placement of the next post and the next hole dug. The dirt should be back-filled into the holes and tamped down. Gravel should then be sloped around the posts. The gravel helps give strength for the heavy rails and help to divert water away from the posts. If the area is wet when the posts are installed, it should have more dirt added and be tamped after it dries and settles. An end post can be used on each side of a gate if desired. Most farmers use metal gates with their fence.

Caring for and Use for Small Livestock

Painting the exterior of the fence with a weatherproofing sealer will make the fence last longer. It will also help to keep its natural color and not grey over time. Because of the rather large gaps with split rail fencing, a use of wire mesh can help to keep in the smaller of the livestock. The wire mesh can be easily installed by rolling it along the installed split rail fence and stapled on with galvanized staples and a staple gun. The wire mesh comes in various heights to fit the needs of the livestock. A monthly inspection of the entire fence should be done to insure the safety of the livestock. Checking to see that the posts are not settling and leaning, the rails are staying in place and there are no holes in the mesh will keep your animals safe and secure.

About this Author

Dale DeVries is a retired realtor with 30 years of experience in almost every facet of the business. DeVries started writing in 1990 when she wrote advertising and training manuals for her real estate agents. Since retiring, she has spent the last two years writing well over a thousand articles online for Associated Content, Bright Hub and Demand Studios.

Photo by: Kevin Tuck

Article provided by eHow Home & Garden | Building a Livestock Fence