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What a difference deer fencing makes!

Post in 'The Inglenook' started by StihlHead, Jul 19, 2013.

  1. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    I used to get a few pints of blueberries a week before I put up the deer fencing around them. Now, I get a few gallons. I picked these this afternoon in about 20 minutes. I get way more than I can possibly eat from 8 bushes 6 feet tall.


    blueberries.jpg

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Wow, they look wonderful. You're lucky the birds haven't discovered your plants yet. They will, but bird netting works too.

    Deer fencing is wonderful, until it fails to stop them. We are having deer wars right now. After 5 years of no deer, they started jumping the fence so I raised it 2 ft. Then we discovered this morning they have started crawling under another area. Green beans, impatiens, stock and half an apple tree are all gone. I have to say that right now I hate the long legged rats. Bow and arrow season doesn't start until Sept.. But their numbers will be reduced then.
  3. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    I've seen people put up deer fencing around a fair chunk of property around their homes. I was thinking of doing it, esp. if the deer got more worse.
    What are the concerns if attaching the fence (via support wires) to trees? I could do just about what I need to do attaching to trees.
    Trees move and grow, however. :)
  4. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    These blueberry bushes have been here for about 40 years, so the birds know they are there. They do get to them, maybe 10% at most. I simply toss the bird pecked ones onto the ground when picking them. The deer used to eat 90% of them, as well as the leaves (which many say that they do not eat, but they most certainly do).

    I have been at war with the deer in the west for most of my life. They eat most everything here, which is why I grow a lot of bamboo (which they completely ignore). Not 10 minutes after I posted that photo this afternoon than I went back outside and there was a large blacktail deer munching away on my pear trees 10 feet from the blueberries. So I shoed the deer into the front and then out onto the highway. I have a 7 foot deer fence around my berries (blue, rasp, and black), and I have a wire another foot above that with white telltales flying that they can see. They do not jump it. I also have the fence staked into the ground every 3 feet so they cannot nose their way under and get into the berries, and I have bamboo poles attached to the bottom. The fruit, maple, liquid amber, plum and cherry trees here are all old and large enough to be deer resistant. They all have a 5 foot deer haircut where they have been eaten on the bottom. I also have several large hostas on a table at the back of the house, but the deer do not come onto the cement patio to eat them.
  5. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    I use t-posts and 8 foot sections of 2 inch PVC pipe dropped over that, spaced 10 feet apart. On that I hang 7 foot poly deer fencing, and I run a wire a foot above that with white streamer telltales. I also add white streamer telltales to the side of the fencing, about 4 feet up and spaced between the poles. I attach bamboo poles parallel to the ground to the bottom of the fence and stake them every 3 feet. I put a door post/pole in 3 feet from one pole, and I use a bamboo pole attached to one side to open and close, and a copper wire to latch the bamboo pole door end to one post. I use t-posts pounded into the ground at a 60 degree angle and tied to the corner posts to anchor them.

    This is the 4th or 5th iteration of deer fencing that I have developed and used over the years. It has worked for me so far. I had an acre under cultivation at my ex's place wrapped in it, as well as a separate half acre vineyard, and another half acre orchard. I never had a break in by the deer in 4 years there. The sheep did get in a few times by pressing on the gate by the barn, but no deer jumped it or got into those areas. We had a neighbor there with 10 acres planted in pinot noir grapes surrounded by a larger 10 foot perimeter deer fence. They had a few get into the vineyard, and they usually shot them. You can get an emergency hunting permit that is good year round in Oregon if you have over 40 acres.

    That said, we also had elk down there. They would come in herds of 15 to 50. There is no such thing as elk fencing. I saw them trample down a 10 foot cyclone fence like it was tissue paper. For that reason I use a light poly deer fence material that can be spliced into place if elk wander in, or a deer does jump or nose under the fence and goes on the rampage trying to get out. I used the dogs to chase the elk away when they came around. We had thousands of newly planted trees there and elk are capable of ripping out hundreds of them in a single visit. There are elk here as well, but I have never seen any near my property.
  6. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Sounds like you have a nice farm there. Our fencing is much the same construction but encircling about an acre of uneven, sloped terrain. (The house, fruit orchard and main gardens). That makes keeping a tight perimeter more challenging. This year we have had unprecedented breakins by a mom and she has taught her yearlings. They have repeat body-slammed holes right thru heavy duty deer fencing and have crawled under some fencing that is anchored with heavy duty plastic line. The breakin I found yesterday had actually torn the deer fencing off the line as they crawled under. I think the only solution is going to be to eliminate this family.
  7. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    Hmmmm, yah, once they have learned to jump in from high spots or nose under fencing, it is difficult to get them to go someplace else to browse. I have never had deer plow through the poly. It takes about a year to de-train them from going to a certain spot to feed.

    I no longer live in the ex's farm, or ranch, as it were. She is south of Eugene in the Coast Range, and I live in the west Cascade slopes east of Portland. The terrain here is sloped but rather flat. The terrain at the ex's had rather steep sections along the orchard and some parts of the vineyard. I used bamboo extension poles and attached streamers to the top along the deer fence poles there, making it look like the fence was higher than it was along the steeper sections to keep them from jumping in from there. You have to show the deer where the fencing is using streamers, and by doing that you can fool them into thinking there is fence where there isn't any.

    If they punch through heavy duty deer netting that is an issue I have never seen or heard of before. Except by bears going after muscat grapes in Southern Oregon. Susan's Vineyard is on the property next to my ex's place, and they have 20 of their 120 acres deer fenced around their pastures, vineyard and house. They pounded in 12 foot t-posts and ran 10 foot tall heavy duty poly deer fencing material, and used steel tension wire at the bottom, middle and top, and staked the bottom wire every few feet and tied it to the fencing about every foot. But like I said, they had break-ins and they just shot any deer that got past that fence so there was no teaching fawns.

    Maybe you need to add some mid section wires or poly line to keep them from busting through the netting? At the ex's I used steel tension wire at the bottom, middle an top and Grippled (tension cams) them taught and used bailing twine to affix the netting to the wire every few feet. Here I used poly bailing twine as top and bottom wires, with bamboo poles along the bottom, and an added poly higher wire run. This one is only a 50 by 15 foot fenced area though, with 12 foot tall junipers along one side, and it is a more or less flat area. If they tried to punch though, I would add a series of horizontal poly lines (I have miles of bailing twine) every 2 feet to add more strength. Bailing twine is good because it is UV resistant and has high tensil strength (120# or better). O/w steel tension wire is best.
  8. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Our fences around the gardens and fruit are 5' high. Rarely have we had a problem with deer but came upon a simple solution. The t-posts are a bit higher than the fence so on each t-post we also tied plastic bags; the kind you get when grocery shopping. No more deer problems.
  9. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I caught the mom after just entering this morning. The kids were still on the other side of the fence. I think this is the current corner where they are getting it under the fence. Spent some time this morning doing some major reinforcement there. I think that should stop that entry point.I have bird scare tape on 1/2 pvc extension to my T posts. Height varies from 8-10 ft. The yard looks like a used car lot. with the flashing perimeter. Dennis, our deer would laugh at plastic bags. Several years back we had hanging aluminum pie plates with strikers and lots of CDs hanging on string. It was flashy and noisy, but ineffective. My guess is that you must have a lot more predators in your area (coyotes?) We have none.

    This morning I ordered a Scarecrow infrared water sprinkler. They seem to need training to stay away from 2 primary locations. We'll see how this one works. The locals say it has been effective for them.
  10. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Yes, indeed we have many coyotes.
  11. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Besides keeping their numbers down it think it might make them a lot more skittish. Our deer are anything but skittish and we have a lot. At times there have been at least 8 in just a hundred feet of each other in our yard.
  12. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    We can relate to that for sure. We've had up to 16 at one time in the yard. Have had 3 fawns born in the yard too. This morning I had a nice thrill. I worked up a small field and when done I had to stop to raise the spring toothed drag. As I stopped a doe came into the lane ahead of me about 50 yards. I got off and did my thing then back on. She started feeding! Then her fawn came into the lane too. Soon they started coming closer so I shut the atv off. I talked to them and gave the nod and the doe kept feeding and got to within 15 yards of me. The fawn went on the opposite side. I sat there for maybe 15 minutes. Finally I started the machine and went to the other field. The deer just stood there watching me. For sure, the doe knows my voice. This sort of thing happens quite often here and we love it.
  13. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    If I have a kinder thought instead of 86ing them I will ship you a crate load.
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  14. Retired Guy

    Retired Guy Feeling the Heat

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    During the heating season deer taste better than berries.
  15. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    ...I much prefer elk myself. I do not think that the predators are much of a factor in deer invasions. We had cougar and bears at the ex's place, as well as coyotes, and the deer were there in droves, as were elk, turkeys, grouse, and other stuff. I watched these hunting shows and these guys are sitting in blinds out in the boonies in camo clothes, waiting... and I would look out the window and see what they were hunting on the property, sometimes 20 feet from the living room. Not much sport in shooting something from the couch during TV commercials.
  16. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Sport schmort. If they want to hunt from our front porch they are welcome. All I ask is that they are good marksmen and leave nothing behind.
  17. Shane N

    Shane N Feeling the Heat

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    Come to our place and take a few wolves home with you. You won't have deer problems anymore.
  18. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    Ah, well the wolves (for better or worse) are being allowed back into this area from Idaho. I would rather they just give out more tags for deer hunting myself, having raised sheep for many years. But yah have to keep the urbanites with all the votes happy, regardless of the impact on rural farming and ranching. I have spent more than one night in my vineyard with my loaded Marlin 30-30 waiting for any deer to show up. I also always keep my AR-15 loaded here for the coyotes.
    Shane N likes this.
  19. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Mi has plenty. We need less, not more.
    Shane N likes this.

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