U.S. Department of Agriculture: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
Date of this Version
White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) populations continue to increase, resulting in direct threats to public safety and increased agricultural losses. A variety of fencing methods are used to reduce deer presence at airports and agricultural areas. Electric fences may offer a less expensive alternative to expensive woven-wire fences. We tested an electric fence product, ElectroBraideTM (Yarmouth, N.S., Canada), on free-ranging deer in northern Ohio. We conducted both 1- and 2-choice tests, measuring deer intrusions and corn consumption at 10 sites encompassed with charged, non-charged or no fence. Mean daily deer intrusions decreased in each test when the fence was powered. When power was immediately applied to the fence, intrusions decreased 88–99%. When power was delayed for 10 weeks, intrusions were reduced 90%. When power was turned on and off within a 4-week period, intrusions decreased 57%. Mean corn consumption differed between treated (< 2–6.4 kg/day) and control sites (15–32 kg/day). Under the conditions and time duration of this test, the fence was an effective deer barrier.
Published in Wildlife Society Bulletin.