How to Erect a Net
Erecting a net is fairly straight forward and the only requirement is that the horizontal live wires do not touch the ground or come into contact with vegetation. The bottom wire is not live so may come into contact with the ground. Many Electric Poultry netting problems may be solved by simple observation and attention to detail.
1. Site preparation
Carry roll(s) of net to proposed fence line. Prepare line by flattening or mowing all vegetation over 4 inches tall. Many users find placing a length of builders damp course below the fence helps with grass growth and reduces fence maintenance considerably.
2. Untying the roll of netting
Untie the 2 tie strings and pull apart the 2 metal clips to release the roll of net.
3. Unrolling the net
Grip all the posts as a group and lift them up in front of you. This allows the netting to unroll in front of you in a series of folded “pleats,” each attached to the posts in your hands. Lay unrolled pleats on the ground. Locate the beginning post. (It’s the post with 2 tie strings attached and a stainless-steel connector at the top.
4. Inserting the first post
Insert the beginning post into the soil beside a stronger support post (either a stiffer Ultimate Horse Post or the Metal Corner Posts or an existing fence. Use the 2 tie strings to secure the first post to the support post or fence. Keep the net end post(s) at least 50mm/2" away from anything that is conductive (metal, wood, concrete).
5. Unfolding the net
Grip all remaining posts as a group and lift them up in front of you. Then walk backwards along the intended fence line, “feeding out” each post as it’s pulled from your hands, thereby unfolding the netting. To reduce the risk of tangling the netting, try to drop or toss each post in sequence, helping to free it from the other posts you are still holding. Unfold entire roll of netting along the fence line.
6. Installing line posts
Starting at the first post, walk along fence line, picking up each post in turn and pushing it into the ground. Apply only enough sideways tension to each post to keep the netting erect and straight. Stretch netting just tight enough to stand up well.
7. Joining 2 rolls of standard net
Start the second roll by placing its first end post next to the last end post of the first net. Use the 2 tie strings to tie them together
8. Joining 2 rolls electrically
To join one roll of standard netting to the next to provide an electrical connection, simply slide the built-in, stainless-steel male/female “power” connectors together by hand at one end. Do not use pliers to force them. The 2 pieces of metal only need to make and maintain contact.
9. Ends, corners and curves
Use stiffer posts to provide extra support at the ends and corners. More support may be needed depending on the type of netting, terrain and shape of the enclosure.
10. Connecting the energiser to a net
For either a battery (DC) or plug-in (AC) energiser, attach the lead wire from the fence terminal on energiser top clip at one end of the net (see above image). Attach the ground wire from the ground terminal on the energiser to the ground-rod system.
Tips to maximise the efficiency of an electric net;-
1/. Keep the hen house in the centre of the fenced area, not close to the perimeter. This will lower the degree of temptation for the fox, by keeping it as far as possible from the house.
2/. The fence must be pulled tight using the posts at each corner
3/. Check the power in the fence every evening.
4/. The power must be left on at night, as this is generally when the fox will test the fence for a power failure.
5/. No grass or foliage should touch the fence, as this will cause a ‘short’. Lay a strip of builders damp proofing under it.
6/. The fence should be kept away from overhanging trees, hedges, or fences.
Laying a strip of builders damp course benieth the bottom line will reduce the maintenance requirement a lot.
An alternative way of keeping the corners taut is to use a guy rope at each corner as shown in this picture. Ensure that you use non-conductive materials. Plastic string or fishing line is ideal.
Additional lengths of netting may be added together using the connectors attached to the ends of the nets. (See picture below).
Where you want to erect a net on an undulating surface, remove the posts from the net and stretch it out between the corner posts. Position posts in the highest and lowest points of the surface. Re-position the remaining posts along the net to lift the second wire off the ground. If the ground is so undulating that the posts are insufficient to train the net to follow the terrain, in that case remove those posts in the hollows and replace with pegs to pull the net down to the ground. These posts may then be used where best suited. In serious cases it may be necessary to purchase additional posts.
Electric Nets are very resource hungry and not all energisers are capable of running an electric net. Where possible, place the energiser in the centre of the fence so the current flows both ways. The HotShock or Farmer range will give the best combination for fox protection as they run at higher voltages than standard energisers and will better control. Standard energisers will however be successful in their own right. Only connect one energizer per fence. The best place to connect to a net is at the clamp on the ends of the net.
Dismantling a Net.
When dismantling the net, collect up all the stakes together allowing the net to fold down between the posts. These are then used to roll the net onto. Do not try and roll the net up from one end, it will be a mess and take ages to roll up.
Fault Finding on Poultry Nets.
- If the voltage drops below 3000v on the net, you need to turn off the energiser and unhook the net from the energiser.
- Test just the energiser by itself as outlined in this troubleshooting page. If the voltage is 6000v or higher on the energiser then logically the problem is in the net.
- The most common problem is that the lowest 'hot' strand has been caught around one of the metal spikes on the posts and is shorting it out.
- The net must be at least 2" away from anything metal (metal posts, existing fences, spikes on support posts).
- On Poultry Nets, the bottom hot wire can slip off of the plastic portion of the end posts and get caught onto the metal spikes. This will cause a dead short and no energy will be on the fence. Unhook the energizer and slide the hot wire back onto the plastic post.
- Hook energizer back to the net and test.
- Make sure the Energiser has sufficient capacity to run the number of nets attached to it.