grazing meat goats

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Hi I'm Leslie

I'm a full-time farmer in Western Wisconsin where I raise meat goats and sheep on pasture using regenerative and rotational grazing practices.

I created this website because
I had so many people reaching out, both locally and beyond, wanting to know more about how I was raising and marketing goats.

I also recognized that it IS so hard to find information in this space. I wanted to share what I've learned along the way and reduce your time searching the depths of the internet.


Gallagher Smart Fence Review

The Gallagher Smart Fence is a great option for temporary goat fence since it is easy to use, set up/take down, and store and transport. On our farm we use this fence to subdivide our goat pastures into smaller paddocks for rotational grazing.

What is the Smart Fence?

The Gallagher Smart Fence, also know as the Smart Fence 2 or the SmartFence, is an all-in-one temporary electric fence system, which includes four reels of polywire on one gear handle with step-in posts. It’s a good option for electric fence for smaller livestock, such as goats or sheep, since it has multiple strands of electric wire.

Fence Specs

The Smart Fence offers the following specifications:

  • 4 polywire electric fence with 3 poly braid strands and 1 turbo braid
  • A bottom polywire that can be adjusted to help reduce grounding with grass
  • 1 easy to use reel for set up and take down
  • 9 step in posts, 10 including the reel with a post built in
  • 100 meters or 138 feet in length
  • 900 millimeters or 3 feet in height
  • It easily connects to a portable energizer or permanent, energized electric fence
  • Replacement parts are available
Learn how to keep goats in electric fence guide

How to use this in a grazing system

On our farm, Cylon Rolling Acres, we’re primarily using the Gallagher Smart Fence to subdivide our pastures into paddocks. We will use it outside our existing pastures as well.

Using it inside permanent goat fencing with electric

Here’s how we set up the temporary fence in our permanent goat pastures. We use three Smart Fences at a time to effectively move our goats from one paddock to the next.

  1. At the beginning of the grazing season I set up a semi-temporary polywire electric fence down the center of my pasture. I use two strands of polywire and step in posts. This center fence starts and ends with a fairly large distance to the perimeter fence, allowing us to create a paddock or extend this fence with a portable fence in this space.
  2. I create paddocks with the Smart Fence, where I run one fence from the permanent fence to the semi-temporary electric fence. By keeping the SmartFence straight and avoiding turns, it handles better during setup and takedown.
  3. I connect the Smart Fence to our permeant electric fence with jumper cables (for electric fences). Then the portable electric fence is powered from the energizer in our barn.
  4. For each new paddock, I simply set up another Smart Fence fence, open the back fence to let the goats through, move the pasture shelters, mineral, and water tank to the new paddock. Close the back fence. Then take down the old back fence.
  5. Keep repeating.

You can also use the fence in the same setting with out the semi-temporary divider fence, but set it up in two “L” shapes. This will allow you to keep making new paddocks based on the last paddock. Three Smart Fences should be enough to create this set up.

Using the Smart Fence without a permanent goat fence

Here’s how we use the Smart Fence system on our farm in areas without existing goat fence. In this example we are using 3 Smart Fences.

  1. Set up two fences in an “L,” shape so the fences when joining together create a fenced in paddock. One of the “Ls” will be extended into the next paddock, but not yet be complete.
  2. Connect the fences together with an electric fence jumper cable.
  3. Connect the fence to a portable electric fence energizer, either solar powered or powered with a deep cycle battery.
  4. To set up the next paddock, just create a third “L” and then open the fence to let the goats in. The back fence can be taken down to use for the next paddock.
  5. Keep repeating.

Video overview of the Smart Fence

Learn more about how the Gallagher Smart Fence works and is used with rotational grazing in this YouTube video below.

Always remember to train your goats

Like all electric fence options, it is very important to train your goats to electric fence so they respect it. The fence is only as good as the training. After that, make sure the fence is always on and hot, there’s always enough to eat in the paddock, and that you rehome any troublemakers who keep getting out. They will teach other goats their bad habits.

Where to buy the Smart Fence

We’ve been using Gallagher products from the very start with our energizers and portable fencing. I’m proud to be a Gallagher partner and also share with you a 10% discount code – CYLON – on your entire order on the Gallagher NA website, for orders in the U.S. and Canada (affiliate link).

Maintenance and repairs

In this video below I walk through some of the common repairs and maintenance that may need to be done with regular wear and tear with use of this fence. Note, we’ve been using these fences for nearly 10 years now. Like any piece of equipment they’ll need some tune ups now and then to keep working over the years. I also cover how and where to get replacement parts as well.

Post first published September 2021.

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