Homeowners may consider a baited electric fence to fight a persistent and costly deer problem. A baited electric fence combines the basic barrier protection of a fence with the averse-conditioning aspects of electric shocks. Although a baited electric fence can be an effective deterrent to deer, it is generally expensive and difficult to install, and the components that make it work so well may make it infeasible for the average homeowner’s needs.
Baited Electric Fence Setup
Baited electric fences come in as many configurations as there are plants that need protecting. The basics of a baited electric fence consist of one, two, or more strands of electric wire supported by wood, plastic, or metal stake posts. A charging system provides an electric current to the wires, and deer receive a shock by either touching the charged wire and a ground wire, or the charged wire and the ground (if the system includes a grounding rod). Bait of some kind entices the deer to touch the wire and receive the shock, and warning signs-such as ribbons-are needed to warn humans to stay away from the fence.
Effective Alternative to Baited Electric Fence
If a baited electric fence is not a feasible option, the Wireless Deer Fence® is an effective alternative, providing guaranteed deer control. The Wireless Deer Fence functions like a baited electric repellent but without wires.
I just received my second order of the Wireless Deer Fence. I had been using them successfully in NJ before moving to GA and a larger property. It appears that the Georgia deer also stay away from them! Replacement of the batteries gave them new life for the fourth year of use. Your product is just as you claim.
Before Installing Baited Electric Fence for Deer
A few caveats on baited electric fences:
- The fence must be constructed in such a way that deer will touch the charged wire, so multiple charged wires may decrease the likelihood that deer will simply jump the fence to reach desirable plants.
- An electric fence must involve a commercially purchased charging system because the currents they provide are appropriate for deer deterrence and will not significantly injure humans who come in contact with the fence.
- The baits used for the baited electric fence-applied to ribbons at intervals along the fence, or applied directly to the wire-must be reapplied at regular intervals, or deer will not have incentive to actually touch the fence and receive the shock.
- The ribbons and warning signs necessary for baited electric fences make them less attractive for smaller, aesthetically pleasing installations.
A baited electric fence for deer requires a significant amount of human intervention to maintain. Voltage checks, vegetation removal, and checks for broken wires must take place regularly so that deer do not take advantage of an outage in the fence’s effectiveness. Once deer enter the fence without receiving a shock, it will be more difficult to deter it in the future.