Last year, if you remember, we built a pig pasture of just three strands of electrical tape. You can catch it here if not. This year, we are expanding the pasture and making it multifunctional. I want my chickens fenced in a very large area - 2 acres for them to free range without free ranging in my perennial gardens. Those little buggers LOOOVE to mess up my mulch every time I lay it so it's best for their health and mine if we keep them in a designated area. In order to fence them we are putting up a 5'fence with posts (not metal) to also house the goats (yep you read that right) and the pigs. There will be one strand of electrical tape on the inside bottom of the fencing to keep the pigs from pushing up against it. This type of pasture will be multipurpose and last for many years down the road. It cost approx. $900. Unfortunately, fencing is not cheap - but for others that want to do one similar, you know about what it will cost you now. That includes the following:
48 - 6' posts
10- 6'h, 5" diameter posts (for doorways and anchors)
550'l, 5'h 14 gauge wire (small square so the chickens don't squeeze out)
Battery (for electrical fence)
electrical insulators and handle for releasing the gate
16' large metal gate (craigslist! Found mine for $50)
Large pallets for animals huts
My husband made the 2 small gates from 2x4's, left over gauge wire and a few latches. We also used some left over electrical tape to section my three sows/guilt into their own areas as one, the Mangalitsa was ready to have her little and it would be really unfortunate for my large Tamworth to lay on them. My Berkshire is only 4 months and is incredible annoying to the other, older sows so for her safety she has her own area as well.
Now I can go out to the pasture and feed, water and play with the chickens, pigs, ducks, and soon/maybe goats without them making a mess of the yard or getting out. And all my work around the gardens isn't un-done in a matter of .0001 seconds.
We shall see how well this pasture setup goes and if things need to be changed along the way.
Here are pictures of how the pasture comes together.
* update: So far, it's been 3 weeks like this and the a few of the sows need some extra fencing. Tammy likes to eat...a lot and will be aggressive with the other pigs and not let them eat- so she needs her own electrical fencing in her own area, which has worked out beautifully.
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It's me, Meg. Checkout 'My Story' for more about my mission.