As winter arrives and many farmers take to the fields to mend fences, Agridirect.ie discusses key fencing-safety precautions.
Winter farm maintenance
Generally speaking, winter isn’t a time when we feel like doing a lot of farm maintenance. Throughout the season, Ireland tends to get a battering from strong Atlantic winds and heavy rain – and let’s not even talk about the constant threat of hail or snow. So when we have a free minute, we would probably prefer to spend it indoors, sitting by the fire with a mug of tea and a newspaper.
However, some farmers see winter as a chance to do a lot of farm maintenance work that they mightn’t have time to do in the spring. They are a rare breed, to be sure, but they do exist. I know one or two lads who can’t sit still for 5 minutes and have to be outside, no matter what conditions are like on the land. They spend a good part of the winter months trudging through mud in the lashing rain, mending broken fences and erecting new ones.
This week, retired fencing contractor Micheál Geoghegan talked to Agridirect.ie about hanging farm field gates that will last. Micheál has hung hundreds of farm gates over the years. His advice is laid out here in a simple 9-step guide.
Retired fencing contractor Micheál Geoghegan from Aghacashel, Co. Leitrim. Micheál worked as a fencing contractor for 30 years. He is pictured on his farm with his dog, Dasher.
Spring is fencing season. Here at Agridirect, we sat down for a conversation with Micheál Geoghegan, a retired fencing contractor from Aghacashel, Co. Leitrim. In this interview, Micheál offers some top fencing tips for farmers.
Agridirect interviewer: I
Micheál Geoghegan: MG
I: Micheál, we’re just coming into April, so a lot of farmers in this part of the country are putting animals onto pasture. It’s the time of year when you see a lot of sheep and cattle on the road. The more adventurous animals will always test a fence for sweeter or thicker grass. In your experience, what are the most common mistakes that people make when putting up a fence?
MG: Most fences come apart because the straining posts aren’t secured properly.
When corner strainers aren’t tied back and propped correctly, they will come loose. That collapses the fence. The whole thing just falls apart. The same applies to any posts on bends in the fence, any posts that are taking a sideways pull. If those aren’t secured against the pull, they’ll snap very quickly. Your strainers and corner posts are the bones of your fence. They have to be rock solid if you want a fence to last. Continue reading “Why do fences fall apart? We ask a retired fencing contractor”
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