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Floppy Fences 
Fencing in your food and fencing out competitors
There is also a Power point presentation on building floppy fences available.

The information below is for an Australian setting, especially for the island of Tasmania where the animals that cause problems are:

  1. Rabbits - an introduced species that nibbles the tops off seedlings and ring barks fruit tree. Readily digs under fences and slips through small holes.
  2. Kangaroos and Wallabies - will jump low fencing, grazing on garden vegetables, flowers and fruits.
  3. Wombats - will dig under or push through most fencing. Grazes on greenery.
  4. Brush tail Possums - very destructive animal in the garden, will climb up fruit trees to eat the new shoots and break branches. Eats a wide variety of greenery. Will spend weeks and months trying to get "through" the fencing and if successful will leave a scent trail that many others follow.
  5. Deer - these will jump normal height fencing but not floppy. (To date!)

The need for fencing - The Pindari Experience.

We have found that if you wish to grow your own food in Tasmania you MUST have a fence. No fence, no food.

We have found that the bush animals may leave your garden alone for 11 months of the year but at certain times and especially mid summer and winter, and in times of drought, the damage they can do in just a few nights can be a major set back to your food supply.

At Pindari we have successfully used extensive floppy fencing to keep unwanted animals out of our gardens for over 16 years. We employ the use of a dog along with the fence and train the dog that rabbits and possums are "its" food. Thus when a gate is left open or a tree breaches the fence, the dog verbally tells us that we have unwanted animal visitors.

For our "Australian" conditions we chose floppy fencing instead of electric "hot" wires because:

  1. The floppy is a physical barrier that if correctly put in place and maintained keeps animals out 24 hours a day cf. electric fencing fails when the power fails. Experience has show it can be shorted out especially in wet weather and Australian animals, especially the Possum, often find ways around or over the hot wires.
  2. Running an electric wire with intermittent very high voltage current across the earth's surface creates a pulsing magnetic energy field that could locally affect the earth's magnetic energy field and thereby negatively affect the local growing conditions.
  3. You can see when the gate is not shut but not if the current is on or off.

The Floppy Fence.

Provided below are edited images of the Pindari fencing to provide the reader with visual information for planning their fencing. 

The weakest point of the fence is the gates. The less gates the less there are to be left open at night by accident. Humans leave "animal" trails through the gate that animals follow. Also, either side of the gate where it connects with the fence is the area where the greatest difficulty is in keeping Possums out.

Our gates and posts are steel as the ground is too rocky for the driving of wooden fence posts and they are "fire" resistant. The flashing is made from recycled material.

The floppy section needs to be loosely hanging, confusing the possum as it climbs by its overhang. 

 

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