Re: DEER CONTROL HELP NEEDED
In response to Troy Bogdan request for deer fence information.
New Zealand fencing is generally very good for deer. But it tends to be a
little expensive. However, you pay for durability. I have seen people
attach strips of aluminum foil to the fence, and put a dab of peanut butter
on the foil. One taste is generally all any one deer will attempt. It's
A nice arrangement I recently saw surrounding a market garden was a pair of
6 foot fences set 6 feet apart. Within the two fences were free range
chickens and ducks - if you sell eggs this is an added advantage. The
poultry did an excellent job keeping down the insects and the slugs (which
here in Washington are almost as devasting as the deer!)
Another fence you can try is a blackberry fence. A thick (6 foot spread
and 4-5 feet high) blackberry hedge does a pretty good job of keeping out
deer. You may have to do some weaving of vines to keep it all together,
but it works moderately well.
>I run a small certified organic organic farm in Western Pennsylvania (Near
>Pittsburgh) and we have been hurt pretty badly this year by deer damage. The
>deer entirely wiped out our tomatoes this year (our main cash crop), did
>significant damage to our pumpkins and winter squash and also wiped out our
>sunflowers. They also kicked holes in our floating row covers so they could
>get to the beets and swiss chard, while also letting in insects.
>I tried a few things to persuade them to go elsewhere, but it really didn't
>do any good. Some of the things we tried were . . . bars of soap (new bars
>and used bars with human scent) spread out among the crops, dogs, smelly
>clothing left in the fields, radio on at night, a spray called "Repel" which
>is made from ammonium soaps sprayed around the tree line, scarecrow balloons,
>etc. I even chased them away myself by running after them. I have been
>carrying a shotgun lately, but it seems they hide anytime I come around with
>the gun. I don't really prefer to hunt them down, since I don't eat meat,
>and I enjoy having wild animals around, but this is my financial survival
>we're talking about.
>Next season I will invest in an electric fence. I have talked to a few fence
>companies and it seems like each company recommends a different fence setup.
> Does anybody have any proven fence setups or suggestions. We are probably
>going to fence in about a two acre field.
>Does anybody have any other proven techniques which I may try to keep them
>out of our fall crops (If we have any fall crops this year due to the
>Thanks in advance for your help. I am really desperate.
> Sincerely, Troy Bogdan -
> Pure Earth Organic
>Farm, Bridgeville, PA
Carol A. Miles, Ph.D.
Washington State University
Extension Agricultural Systems
360 NW North Street
Chehalis, WA 98532
PHONE 360-740-1295 FAX 360-740-1475