Bears present a substantial problem to outdoor activity in the regions that these animals occur. A recent contract to protect drilling rigs in Siberia required considerable research to establish the best solution. The bears were interfering with drilling activities by approaching too close to workers for their safety. This had been brought about by the bears being able to feed in the proximity of the rigs and losing their fear of man over a period of time. The bears had developed a technique of raiding stores on the rigs. This interferance had led to considerable downtime to an extent that a major petroleum company wanted to humanely exclude them from the area.

After reading research results from the National Wilderness Education trials and other sources a three or four line system would provide the best protection for the least cost, however the customer decided that the more expensive wolf netting coupled with solar powered high energy energisers would be preferable from a maintenance angle. In my opinion they were not sure of the effectiveness of the line fences despite being shown all the documentation on fences.

The Wolf nets and Electric fencing energisers were delivered from the UK at a delivery cost greater than the cost of the materials. After a very long but interesting journey to Siberia (I now know why the area is avoided) to train the personnel and set up the systems they were seen to be immediately effective and eliminated bear attacks. Three bears tested the equipment on the first night and were repelled. These nets were subsequently rolled out over 43 drill rigs and have proved successful. 

The solar electric fencing systems should be effective as it is envisaged that the netting will be dismantled over winter as the threat from the bears disappears once they have gone into hibernation. The batteries would probably not survive the extreme freezing over the winter if left outside anyway.

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