Categories: Articles, Resource managementPublished On: 12th April 2018

Build a sheep farm with Bonnox

By 3 min read

Intensive and meticulous planning preceded Ian Wyeth’s move from the town to the farm to take up sheep husbandry. One of the solutions that accompanied him was Bonnox.

“For years, I have lived in the southern part of Pretoria and frequently passed the Bonnox factory,” he said. “Their name on the roof is visible from afar.”

Bonnox had to assist him with the transformation of the cattle farm in the Free State province of South Africa to a sheep farm. Now, after almost 1,5 km of fencing, there is a comfortable camp and lambing pen system on the farm, and he and his family are also safe behind Bonnox fencing. Ian says he now has eight Bonnox camps. This system makes the management of his herd much easier. They have two lambing seasons for which the ewes were divided into groups. When the lambs are weaned, the male lambs are separated from the female lambs.

The mature rams must also be separated from the ewes and, of course, a camp is needed for sick animals or the handling of animals. With Bonnox, it is also easy to make camps larger or to temporarily divide camps into smaller enclosures. Ian also covered the gates bought from the co-operative with Bonnox, because the best fence is to no avail if the lambs or predators can pass in or out through the gate.

Now Ian even acquired his own pipe bender to make his own gates exactly to measure, and then cover them with Bonnox.  Bonnox’s close mesh keep the predators out very effectively. The ground under the fence is well-levelled and the wire is stringed tightly just above the ground.

The farm has clay soil and Ian made sure he anchored the corner posts properly and deeply. Between the corner posts, the Y-poles are planted 10 metres apart. With the 100-m rolls, it is easy to plan the size of your camps so that no wire is wasted.

“The planting of the poles is the hardest work; after that it is easy,” says Ian. After undergoing all the necessary training at the Bonnox factory, he and two of his workers initially worked together to erect the fencing. Now, the two workers can go on by themselves.

Ian says: “Bonnox delivers excellent service. They showed me everything I needed to see, and provided all that was necessary to get started. The information on how to use the fencing is neatly outlined on a pamphlet and the wire clamp I bought from them makes the work child’s play.”

Ian says he had to go back to buy more fencing recently and he could not remember the name of the specific product in the wide Bonnox range. The friendly staff promptly perused his previous invoice and helped him to determine the quantity he needed.

In addition to the 1,2 m Money Saver fencing that he uses for the sheep pens, he also bought 1,8 m high Bonnox to fence in the house and yard for safety. The next step will be to electrify the fence, but until then he is counting on Jacob and Willemien, his two big German Shepherd dogs, to kick up a racket when undesired people come close to the fence.

Ian says he was pleasantly surprised by the farm’s carrying capacity, and decided to get a few head of cattle. The weaners are now also behind 1,2 m Bonnox, but the poles are higher and only a strand or two of barbed wire or above the Bonnox prevents boisterous calves from jumping over the fence. The next step was lambing pens… with Bonnox, of course!

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