#CdnAgDay...Happiness is... February 16, 2017 22:06
Happy Canadian Agriculture Day!!
This warm weather is wonderful for everyone and the cattle too, and they start feeling the itch of extra hair. They try hard to find places to rub on to get rid of the extra hair they grow when it is cold. Some of our pastures have no trees, just feeders and barb wire fences around. These barbs are just the right thing for many cattle as they just put their heads thru the fence and feel the barb on their backs and start moving back and forth – aahhh! That feels so good!! You can see signs of this by the big clumps of hair on a stretch of barbs on certain areas of fence. And occasionally they just take one more step forward to get to their backsides and walk right through the fence – then cannot figure out how to get back in!! If there is no power on the fence, they will rub on it, but if the power is working properly then they would not stick their heads in to start with.
Yesterday I had discovered abut 20 head had taken part in this activity – rubbing on the barbs and walking through a fence. I found them in a narrow alley we have between two pastures, where we had planted many spruce trees over ten years ago. These trees provide a windbreak for cattle and beautify the farm. It was work to get these critters out of this fenced off area and then get power back so they would not get through again and start rubbing on the trees and in time destroy them.
I spent an hour this morning after feeding all my critters (and an hour yesterday), walking fence lines and checking power levels in the electric wire that surrounds most of our pastures where cattle groups are fed all winter. I was looking for a spot where either a tree had fallen on the fence, or a panel moved to touch the wire or some other change that caused a major drop in power flow to all my fences.
The handy tool I use is about the size of a cell phone and is held up against a wire and it gives you a reading of volts going through. It is very handy and fits in your pocket easily. There was a time or two I grabbed out my cell phone and holding it up to the wire and then realizing my mistake! Good for a chuckle or two!!
So this morning after walking more fences, I discovered a broken barb wire that was draped down on the smooth electric wire, causing the power to travel down this extra wire and going thru a metal gate. Therefore, drawing a large amount of power away from the electric fences and having a very low voltage running through the wires. Also creating a very nasty gate if anyone happened to grab it! Could have been a good jolt to get the old heart pumping!
Just so you know, the power is there to help prevent cattle from crawling through but it does not hurt them. It is something like the shock you feel when you walk on a carpet creating a bit of an electric field, and then touch someone – you get a nice little jolt or they do! The cattle get the same thing and they learn to stay away from this source.
Once I tied up the broken wire and rechecked the power coming thru, I had tripled the power flow!!
This was my moment of “happiness is……finding and fixing the power loss spot!!