WILDLIFE FRIENDLY FENCING OPTIONS
Updated: May 12
Wildlife have always had a struggle with man-made fencing. Throughout the West, there are over 600,000 miles of fencing.
Like the previous article stated wildlife-friendly fence is expensive but is by far the best method in place, in particular the drop-down fence. The drop-down fence is just a type of fence where the wires can be dropped to the ground for migrating wildlife and brought back up to contain the livestock. Usually, the fence is dropped in Sept-October of each year and raised again in May. In typical years this leaves enough time for pronghorn and mule deer to migrate through the area without the fence being a hindrance. And the cattle are usually released onto BLM lands from May-Aug.
The wires are held in place by removable pins.
Converting existing fences to a drop-down style of fence is expensive and labor-intensive. And then you have to factor in the manual drop/raising of these fences 2 times a year. At the time of this writing, we have raised approx 4 miles of fence already this year. On average a typical migrating pronghorn or mule deer will cross over 150 fences each year.
Unfortunately, this is a typical scene throughout the West.
Our plan is to focus on key migration routes and convert as many miles of fence as possible in the near future. If you can donate financially to projects like these, please do. But donating manual labor is just as important. With a small crew in place, we can knock out a mile of fence in a couple of hours.
Recent raising of fence by the Winter Range Foundation and Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation in Western Wyoming.