HOW TO INSTALL A McGREGOR DEER FENCE: DEALING WITH GRADE CHANGES
MIDDLE STEPS, CONTINUED
Dealing with Grade Changes
What happens if you are running your fence along flat terrain and suddenly the ground slopes up or down? Obviously, you have to realign the fence to follow the new grade. Do this by installing a post where the slope changes and cutting the fence just after it passes this post. Then angle the next length of deer fencing up or down as much as necessary to make a straight run to the next post , following the new grade. If using metal hexagrid or polypropylene fencing, be sure to leave enough material along the bottom to create a six-inch flap.
If you are going around a curve, you will find that the bottom flap needs to be cut at one or more posts along the curve in order to allow the fencing to comfortably negotiate the curve.
One of the most common errors of deer fence installers is to focus so much on how tall the fence will be that they neglect its bottom. But the bottom is precisely where the deer usually get through. So for starters, if installing polypropylene or metal hexagrid fencing, it is essential to leave a 6-inch flap of fencing material extending outward (toward the deer) on the bottom. This flap should be firmly secured with ground stakes. Use the 12-inch kinked galvanized ground stakes for most kinds of soil, reserving the larger 18-inch hooked rebar ground stakes for soils that are light, dry, or sandy. These ground stakes are usually placed about 6 feet apart, at the place where the fence first hits the ground, and are supplemented with rocks when suitable rocks are available.
If installing welded wire fencing use the same ground stake spacing. However, install the stakes on the lowest fence wire, the one touching the ground. Should there be a space between the bottom of the fencing and the ground, fill this in with earth before staking down the fencing. Or, alternatively, use metal mesh to fill in the gap, attaching this to the welded wire with zip ties or hog ring staples and use the ground stakes to secure the metal mesh to the ground.
Regarding the addition of metal hexagrid skirts (regardless of whether a polypropylene fence is being repaired after holes have appeared in its lower reaches, or whether it is being combined with a metal hexagrid “skirt” 2 to 4 feet high at the time it is first set up) the resulting plastic-metal deer fence combination should offer no open seam for exploration by would-be intruders. The metal skirt (with its 6-inch flap) should be kept on the outside (the side from which the deer will come), and should be firmly attached to the plastic fencing with zip-lock ties or hog rings (roughly one per square foot), and both flaps (if there is a plastic one) should be staked down.