Electric Poultry Netting
Chicken netting is the ideal fencing option for either keeping a few birds in a domestic setting or for larger free-ranging flocks, especially for those of us who prefer a flexible solution that can be moved and stored easily and has a low visual impact.
Available in dark green to be unobtrusive, in 25m or 50m lengths, a 50m Electric Poultry Net has 15 integral flexible posts.
A roll of Poultry Netting includes:
15 Posts built in to the net (9 posts in a 25m net)
Galvanised Ground Pegs
Small Repair Kit
You just need to add an energiser, a 12 volt leisure battery (if opting for battery-power) or HT Lead-out cable if mains powered, and an earth stake.
How electric poultry netting works
The netting is manufactured as a polyurethane cord (plastic string) with metal filaments running through the horizontal strands (apart from the bottom baseline) and this is mounted onto PVC flexible posts.
To electrify the fence, an electric fence energiser is connected to the net, and to the ground via a long metal earth stake, this forms an open circuit.
When an animal comes into contact with the net, whilst its feet are on the ground, it completes the circuit and gets a shock. This is why the net itself does not need to be erected in a loop and can be placed in a straight line if required. The electric fence energiser produces a high voltage pulse approximately once every second.
Foxes, like most animals, investigate unfamiliar additions to their environment and it is at this point the shock is delivered.
Although the net is not of insurmountable height (it is highly unlikely that a fox will attempt to jump that high), once the animal has been shocked, the net will be a psychological barrier and the animal will be unlikely to attempt to go further.
Considerations for using poultry netting effectively
As the live lines of poultry netting are often very close to the ground they are susceptible to 'leakage' (shorting). The bottom line is not live but all other horizontal lines are. Shorts happen where undergrowth could complete the loop and draw power from the fence to ground.
We recommend you should have a reading of at least 3,000v on your chicken fence to provide an effective deterrent. The higher the joule rating on your energiser the greater level of 'leakage' your system will cope with and still maintain an effective voltage.
The key is trying to keep the live lines clear of external contacts e.g. grass, twigs, stones, trees, bushes, wooden posts. This can be difficult, especially on the undulating ground as your bottom line is effectively covering a shorter linear distance to the top line which causes the net to sag. You may need to add extra flexible netting posts or double pronged Corner Posts to achieve better tension.
In some cases keeping the lowest line free from vegetation is difficult so a more powerful energiser (more joules) may be needed, or, you could cut the lowest live line at the first and last post. You can reconnect if needed by using small metal ferrules.
The popularity of electric poultry netting in domestic settings has highlighted potential dangers for some small animals. Amphibians and small mammals e.g. hedgehogs, have been known to get trapped while attempting to navigate through the lowest section of the net and in some cases have died as a result of receiving consistent multiple shocks. This problem can be resolved by erecting a low barrier in front of the net that they cannot navigate or by disconnecting the lowest line as outlined above.
- Ensure you have the correct energiser for the length of poultry netting e.g. a 0.8 joule energiser will be ideal for a 50m Net.
- Keep the live wires free from anything not insulated from the ground (this includes wooden posts).
- Plastic is the only thing that will not create a short in the fence.
- Use at least one independent earth stake.
- If running from mains power use the correct HT electric fence lead-out cable.
- Link here for a wide selection of Electric Poultry Netting Kits from Flyte so Fancy.
Electric Poultry Netting Advice ©Flyte so Fancy Ltd 2013. Author: Anne Weymouth. Reproduction of part or all of this text is only possible with the express permission of Flyte so Fancy Ltd.