On Fri, 10 Aug 2007 12:02:35 -0700, email@example.com wrote:
Get yourself deer mesh fencing. It is virtually invisible from the
eye, cheap and six feet tall. You can buy it in 100 foot rolls for
about 20 dollars or less. Keep it checked for birds getting hung up.
We have tomatoes that look like small pine trees. Deer coupled with
ground hogs and we have the worse garden results in over 40 years.
My brother has been trapping the ground hogs which moved into our area
last year. A new neighbor says his dad is good with a crossbow. This
guy has moose and deer heads up on the wall.
The deer eat our phlox which I can live with but they are also grazing
our Japanese maples we been propagating for over 30 years
What kind of deer? The white tailed here in SE Pennsylvania are not
bothering with the tomatoes. They do enjoy the apples and peaches that drop
to the ground when I thin out the fruit on the fruit trees.
Actually people use a 3-wire electric fence (the Penn State fence) and
place the peanut butter on foil bait tags. It only works if you
maintain the fence in winter when branches are falling on it and keep
replacing the peanut butter. Once the fence gets grounded by a tree
limb, the deer will be in quickly. Also, they don't work well in winter
because the deer aren't grounded when they are standing on ice. Ice and
snow are poor conductors, much poorer than wet soil.
The only effective deer barrier is a tall barrier fence.
Pardon my spam deterrent; send email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Cheers, Steve Henning in Reading, PA USA
Not necessarily true. Four feet high will work just fine *IF* you use two. I
lived in the mountains of NW Montana (very few people, a whole lot of deer
and other critters) for years and had a huge garden that was deer proof. I
had a four foot fence around the garden, then a second four foot fence 4
feet out from that. I ran surveyor's tape along the top of both for a
"visual aid". Deer bounce when they run/jump and can't make the length/leap
to get over both. They know this and won't try. This was taught to me by a
couple of old timers who'd been doing this for years and it worked like a
charm. The second year I went one step further and had a chicken coop that
opened to the runway between the fences. The birds scratched and ate the
bugs and weeds. When the garden grew up to a point where the chickens
wouldn't destroy the new growth of veggies I'd open the inside gate and they
cleaned the bugs out of there too. In the evening I'd just herd the chickens
back in the coop and close the inside gate. The chickens went into the
freezer in the fall so I didn't need to worry about them in the winter. A
new clutch of chicks delivered in the spring kept the cycle going. If you
should happen to leave one gate opened the deer will find it and leap in, I
learned this the hard way.....once.
I ran an electric wire around the outside fence to keep out the bear, moose
and elk. This was "bull strength", illegal inside of most city limits and
even outside the limits in some places, check your local laws. I had a timer
that turned it on just before sun set and off in the morning. The dogs were
out during the day so they took over when the electricity was off. In the
winter I didn't have it on since everything above ground was harvested and
the snow covered everything anyway. Maybe the deer in Pennsylvania are
different but those in Montana could jump a six foot fence and even a few
Olympic class jumpers could go over 8 foot fences. I saw people's gardens
with 10 & 12 foot high netting fences strung around them using bamboo and
saplings for posts. Looked like hell; kept out the deer but more often than
not they were trampled down by moose or elk or mowed over by bear several
times during the garden season. I liked my way better, it worked. Ten years
of the double 4 foot fence and never a grazer in my veggie garden.
Raccoons, squirrels, rabbits and various nocturnal garden moochers in the
food chain were not a problem. There were enough wolves, coyotes and other
natural predators to keep them under control.
The reason Penn State University developed the 3-wire fence for PA is
that our most vulnerable time is in winter. I raise rhododendron
Christmas trees. When there is snow on the ground, the deer will eat
anything that is green, like rhododendrons and conifers. The deer's
first inclination is to crawl under a fence rather than jump over it.
The third wire is a low wire to prevent this. The other 2 are as you
Now Penn State is recommending either an 8' high woven wire deer fence
or a 5 to 9-strand electric fence. They favor the 8' high woven wire
Even with deer fencing we need to run a cable in the bottom of the fence
and staple it to the ground with tent pegs to keep deer from crawling
underneath. They will not jump unless they see a good landing area, but
they will crawl under anytime and anyplace.
Our deer herd is unbelievable. When I moved here from Oregon, PA had
half the area of OR but twice the deer herd. That number has risen
greatly since then (1962). Deer live on the edge of the forest and PA
is a patchwork of forests and fields. We have many chains of forested
"mountains" that run diagonally across the state. In between these
chains of mountains are farmed valleys. The deer pressure is measured
by the height of the browse line. When you drive around here all green
material is browsed up to a well defined line, the browse line. The
more deer, the higher the browse line. We have a problem with spice
bush now, a native plant that deer won't touch. It is becoming an
invasive weed because the deer eat everything else.
In New Zealand they farm deer for meat. They get by with a 6-foot
fence. The deer have forgotten their wild instincts and don't try to
jump it. I wish that was true here and the deer were inside fences.
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Visit my Rhododendron and Azalea web pages at:
Yes Steve, I know, I've visited friends in Pa. and the damned deer were a
traffic hazard as well as a totally invasive nuisance, IMO. I had run boards
around the bottom of the outside fence lines and secured the fencing to
that, mostly to keep chickens in, not deer out. I'd never personally heard
of deer burrowing under fences around where I lived. Plus the fact that our
deer were still wild in that any movement or human presence would send them
running for deep cover. I saw her next door neighbor toss firecrackers out
into his yard and they just sort of wandered off a bit and were back within
moments, others paid no attention at all and kept right on munching the
shrubs. Their natural response of fright/flight was gone. I had other
advantages that living in your area doesn't. Plenty of natural predators
(wolves, bear, mountain lions, etc) are a huge advantage (contrary to
popular belief, hunting didn't effect the population all that much) and an
enormity ( think Carl Sagan saying, thousands upon thousands upon thousands
of square acres) of unpopulated areas for their dining and dancing pleasure,
although wild animals aren't any different from the rest of us in that they
go to eat whatever is tasty and/or most easily acquired such as conveniently
planted food gardens and expensive landscaping.
After seeing the deer wandering around in your neighborhoods at all times of
the day and night, wrecking havoc where ever they wandered, I was
dumbfounded. People would never put up with that if they were packs of stray
dogs........obviously too many Disney freaks around there watching reruns of
Bambi instead of looking into effective wildlife management. *sigh*
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