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Agricultural Fences

Agricultural fences are built with the purpose of keeping animals in a pen or away from crops. These fences are utilitarian, but can possess aesthetic qualities.

4 Board Fence

4 Board Fence is probably the most recognized fence in the country side. It is easily seen and is very pleasing to the eye. The fence, if built right, is very strong and resists animals pushing on it. Woven wire can be attached to the back side of the fence to keep smaller animals in with out detracting from the view. This fence style can be seen with 3, 4, or 5 rails between posts. The initial installation can be labor and material intensive. During the life of the fence, you will need to walk it down and repair minor defects as they occur. Eventually you may need to replace rails, repaint or re-stain the fence, or replace rotten posts. The good news it it may be 10 to 20 years before major maintenance is required.


Woven wire fences are used to contain a lot of different animals. Each type of fence will have a specific purpose. Usually you can use a fence designed for smaller animals on larger ones, but you can not go the other way. This is because the hole sizes change. Ideally you will want to choose the right fence for the right animal to minimize material costs for your fence. They have specialized fencing for rabbits, chickens, goats, sheep, cows, horses, deer, and many other animals.

Woven Wire Fence

Stranded Wire Fence

Stranded wire fences use long strands of wire strung between posts to build a fence. Depending on the type of wire, you can use between 1 and 5 strands of wire. These fences tend to be lower cost to set up, but will require more maintenance to ensure the wires are not broken. Examples of stranded wire fences are barbed wire, electric wire, and high tensile wire fences. Each fence has its own unique properties.


Barbed wire uses barbs along the length of the wire to keep animals in. This fence is described as taming the west. It is relatively inexpensive to install. Fence posts are spaced around 20 feet apart and the wire is stapled to the posts. The pointed barbs keep animals from wanting to push on it too much. The downside to this fence is the barbs themselves. Animals and people can be injured easily if they are forced into the fence. It is highly recommended that gloves be worn when working with barbed wire.

Electric fencing (hot wire) uses electricity as a deterrent for animals trying to push through a fence. The zap received from this fence can used to train animals at a young age about the fence. They will quickly learn to not challenge the fence, even if it is down for a little time. A benefit to electric fences is that once animals are trained, a single strand is all that is required to keep animals in a pen. With so little fencing required, it is used a lot in movable paddocks. With today's technology, the fence can either be powered from the grid or batteries charged by a solar panel.

High tensile wire fences use neither electricity or barbs to contain animals, it uses strength. The high strength steels used in the wire allow animals to push on the fence without the wire breaking. This fence is very much like the 4 board fencing in that it keeps the animals from moving through it by sheer strength. The fence posts can be spaced up to 50 feet apart on flat ground which greatly reduces the number of posts required. This fence can be electrified if needed to keep difficult animals away.

Hedge Fences

Hedge fences are not a common fence anymore. These fences would be made by growing a line of woody plants in a row, then forcing branches and trunks to grow into a solid mass of living material. This fence type requires several years of work in order to establish a fence strong enough to keep in animals. It also requires yearly maintenance to ensure no holes develop in the fence from browsing animals.

Hedge Fence
Stranded Wire Fence
Woven Wire Fence
4 Board Fence
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