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Getting your Wires Crossed | Choosing the Correct Mesh


Do you need to install a fence for your sheep, make an aviary for your budgie collection or need to keep those pesky rabbits out of the veggie garden?  What mesh is best to use?  Some are great to make chicken coops & runs. However, these types of mesh won’t work to keep cows in.  With a huge range of Mesh options to choose from on Hello Fencing alone, it can seem a little daunting.

I recently had the opportunity to visit Whites Rural in Albury where they manufacture a quality range of Mesh and Wire products.  You have got to love Australian made! There I got to see the amazing machines and operations that make these products and also develop a better understanding of the different Mesh Products and where to use them.  

 

Mesh Fencing has three main categories which have several use categories under each one.  I have attached a summary of the options below: 

  • Knotted Mesh
    • Hinged Joint
    • Stiff Stay
      • Horse Safe Option
    • Netting 
      • Chicken / Rabbit Netting
      • Bird Netting
      • Heavy Netting
  • Chain Mesh / Diamond
  • Welded
    • Aviary Mesh
    • Mouse & Snake Mesh
    • Dog Mesh
    • Puppy Mesh
    • Project Mesh
    • Cage Mesh
    • Farm Mesh

The main things to pay attention to when choosing Mesh:

 

The Type of Mesh Fencing: 

The type of mesh is named based on how it is made. The three types of mesh include:

  • Knotted Mesh: Knotted Mesh is manufactured by knotting horizontal and vertical wires to create a strong and robust mesh. Stiff Stay and Hinged Joint Mesh are suited for boundary and livestock fencing as it will bend with stock pressure and land contours. Netting with its hexagonal shape is is generally more flexible making it ideal for home and garden projects.
  • Chain Mesh: Chain Mesh links vertical wires in a diamond pattern. Chain mesh is generally used to keep people out, and commonly used for large dogs.
  • Welded Mesh: Welded Mesh fences are manufactured by welding horizontal and vertical wires. They are rigid and suited for gardens, aviaries and small animals. 

 

Wire Thickness:
Wire thickness does vary on the different mesh type. General rule is that the thicker wires will make the product stronger and more rigid, with some wires being a higher tensile than others.

Galvanising Type:
This identifies the type of galvanising that has been done whether it is Standard or Heavy.  

  • Standard Galvanising will last most Australian conditions…..with many standard galvanised fences still up after more than 30 years.  Many times a fence is updated due to new farming requirements or animal types, rather than the wire rusting out.
  • Heavy Galvanised wire will last approximately 4 times the life of standard galvanised wire.  This makes it more ideal for high corrosive environments like coastal areas.

If you are using a Galvanised mesh with pets (eg birds, small animals etc) we  recommend that new galvanised wire mesh used in aviaries and pet enclosures be treated to remove excess zinc that could possibly harm pets. Shave off any zinc spikes with a utility knife.
The mesh should then be scrubbed with a mild solution of vinegar (2 cups in a bucket of water), and rinsed with clean water.

 

Stiff Stay and Hinged Joint Line Wires (Horizontal):

This is the number of horizontal wires in the mesh fence.  The higher the number will mean more and smaller apertures / mesh holes.  For larger livestock such as cattle we recommend to have at least 6.  For smaller livestock such as sheep we recommend 7+. 

Stiff Stay and Hinged Joint –Distance between Picket Wire (Vertical):

This is the distance between the vertical wires. Measured in cm.  The lower the number will mean more and smaller apertures / mesh holes. The main sizes include 30, 15 & 5: 

  • 30cm is suitable for boundary fencing. This may include fencing for paddocks being cropped or creating fence runs to identify property boundaries.  Being a larger distance also makes it more economical.  This size is fine to use with larger animals such as cattle but not recommended with smaller livestock such as sheep.
  • 15cm is suitable for most livestock fencing as the aperture/mesh holes are smaller.  This deters smaller livestock such as sheep, goats and pigs getting through the fence.  This distance is also great at deterring unwanted animals from getting into the paddock/yard.  This size also makes the fence stronger and more flexible against animal pressure, therefore more ideal around high traffic areas.  
  • 5cm provides a tight fence spacing making it ideal for all livestock animals.  It is also suitable for dog fencing.  5cm is also great for Horse Safe Fencing as it prevents horse’s and foal’s hooves from getting caught in the mesh.  It is our strongest fence.  Overall the best multipurpose option to future proof your investments.

 

Welded Mesh – The Size of the Mesh Aperture (Mesh Hole Size):

Products such as the Mesh Netting, Chain Mesh and Welded Mesh will provide the Mesh Aperture/Mesh Hole size rather than the amount of line wires and the distance between picketwire. The is measured in cm or mm. 

The smaller the measurement = the smaller the mesh hole.  

Netting generally has an aperture of around 4cm.  This type of mesh is suitable for poultry fencing such as chicken & ducks, dogs yards and rabbit proofing.

Aviary Welded Mesh generally has an aperture of 12mm making it ideal for small birds such as budgies. 

Length of Mesh:
How much mesh do you need for your project? Consider the metres required for your fence or the project. Hello Fencing has a range of options starting from 10m up to 200m.

Which Mesh for which Animal?

Hello Fencing is here to help you choose the right mesh for your fencing project. We have provided some common scenarios below with the recommended mesh.

If you need further information or assistance our customer service team are more than happy to assist.  Email us at sales@hellofencing.com.au or call 1800 314 408. 

customer service to assist and help you with any questions you may have. Administration in office holding the phone. call us if you have any issue

Sheep Fencing:

For sheep and smaller livestock fencing, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

  • Knotted Mesh
  • Number of Horizontal Line Wires = 7 + 
  • Distance between Picket Wire (Vertical) = 15cm minimum 
  • Height of mesh = 700mm minimum

Options available on Hello Fencing include: 


Cattle Fencing:  

For cattle and larger livestock fencing, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

  • Knotted Mesh
  • Number of Horizontal Line Wires = 6 + 
  • Distance between Picket Wire (Vertical) = 30cm minimum 
  • Height of mesh = 900mm minimum 

Options available on Hello Fencing include: 


Horse Fencing:

For cattle and larger livestock fencing, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

  • Knotted Mesh & Chain Mesh
  • Number of Horizontal Line Wires =10 + 
  • Distance between Picket Wire (Vertical) = 5cm minimum
  • Diamond Mesh hole size = 50mm minimum 
  • Height of mesh = 900mm minimum 

Options available on Hello Fencing include: 


Rabbit & Pest Proof Boundary Fencing:

For rabbit & pest boundary fencing, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

  • Knotted Mesh & Mesh Heavy Netting
  • Number of Horizontal Line Wires = 13 +
  • Distance between Picket Wire (Vertical) =15cm minimum
  • Mesh hole size = 4cm minimum
  • Height of mesh = 900mm minimum 

Options available on Hello Fencing include: 


Small – Medium Dog Fencing:

For small-medium dog fencing, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

  • Welded Mesh 
  • Graduated mesh meaning the aperture (mesh hole) is smaller at the bottom compared to the top. 
  • Height of mesh = 700mm minimum 

Some options available on Hello Fencing include: 


Medium – Big Dog Fencing:

For medium-big dog fencing, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

  • Knotted Mesh & Diamond Mesh
  • Number of Horizontal Line Wires =13 + 
  • Distance between Picket Wire (Vertical) = 5cm minimum
  • Mesh hole size = 5cm minimum.
  • Height of mesh = 1200mm minimum

Options available on Hello Fencing include: 


Chicken and Poultry Runs: 

For chicken runs, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

  • Knotted Mesh (Netting) & Diamond Mesh
  • Mesh hole size = 5cm minimum
  • Height of mesh = 1800mm minimum 

Options available on Hello Fencing include: 


Aviaries:

For Aviaries, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

    • Welded Mesh
    • Mesh hole size = 12x12mm minimum

Please note: Mesh used will also depend on the design and construction of your cage, aviary or pen. 

Options available on Hello Fencing include: 

Closures for small animals like Guinea Pigs and Rabbits:

For small animal enclosures, Hello Fencing recommends using a mesh with the following characteristics:

    • Welded Mesh
    • Mesh hole size = 25x25mm minimum
  • Please note: Mesh used will also depend on the design and construction of your cage, aviary or pen. 

Options available on Hello Fencing include: 

 

 

Author: 

Nadene Fitzgerald

Hello Fencing Feature Columnist 

Hobby Farmer – Beginner