Sunday, October 2, 2011

This photo shows a small bit of the fenced corridor around all our rotational pastures. We've taken half of our 10 acres of pastureland, built a barn on it with a center alley and 8 main grazing pastures along with 4 smaller paddocks. The paddocks are used when the animals can't be kept on the grass because it hasn't grown enough, is over-grazed or during winter.

There are separate paddocks for rams, ewes, does and bucks. Each group also has it's own corner of the barn for shelter. Having the whole area surrounded by a corridor that the Maremma dogs can patrol all night makes it possible to keep our livestock protected even if the dogs aren't in with each group.

The center alley and perimeter corridor are both 16 feet wide which allow us to use livestock panels to divide them or block them off at any point. There are SO many gates in our fencing system and I'd have put in more if we could have afforded it. Being able to move animals from one area to another in the easiest way demands a lot of gates.

Maybe someday we'll be able to free range our goats through our 100 acres for at least some walks but I'm not sure how we'd keep the dogs with us and I'd certainly not want to risk our goats and sheep to the local predators.

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