Electric fences for reducing sheep losses to predators

  • Published source details Nass R.D. & Theade J. (1988) Electric fences for reducing sheep losses to predators. Journal of Range Management, 41, 251-252.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Install electric fencing to reduce predation of livestock by mammals to reduce human-wildlife conflict

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Install electric fencing to reduce predation of livestock by mammals to reduce human-wildlife conflict

    A replicated, before-and-after study in 1984–1985 of 51 sheep producers in Oregon, Washington and California, USA (Nass & Theade 1988) found that installing electric fencing reduced predation of sheep by coyotes Canis latrans. The number of sheep killed by coyotes each year was lower during two or more years after electric fencing was installed (average 3.5 sheep/year; 0.3%) than during 1–7 years before (average 41 sheep/year; 3.9%). Results were similar when sheep losses were included for producers that had electric fencing installed for one year only (before: 4.3% of sheep killed; after 0.7% killed; numbers not reported). More producers lost no sheep to coyotes after electric fencing was installed (28 of 51, 55%) than before (5 of 51, 10%). In 1984–1985, a total of 51 sheep producers that used electric fencing were interviewed. Electric fences enclosed areas of 1–1,550 ha containing 20–20,000 sheep. Sheep losses to coyotes were recorded during 1–7 years before electric fencing was installed and during one year (five producers) or two or more years (46 producers) after.

    (Summarised by: Anna Berthinussen)

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