NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Fencing for shetlands  (Read 367 times)


  • Joined Nov 2017
Fencing for shetlands
« on: August 25, 2018, 08:38:53 am »
Hi, we're one step closer to getting our first flock of shetlands, but the field needs fencing. I want to make sure the fencing is adequate as one side of the field runs adjacent to a road (60mph) and we live on the opposite side.

I've heard shetlands can be quite jumpy so wondering what other's experience is or what you would reccomend.

The other edges of the field are hedge, wall and arable field (currently maize) so hoping they won't want to escape that way.

Any advice greatly appreciated!
Voss Electric Fence


  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Fencing for shetlands
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2018, 10:41:03 am »
Good very well tensioned stock fencing works well with Shetlands in my experience.

Stone walls less so, I had a Manx used one as a vertical road ::)

And hedges even less so.  They’ll get in and get stuck or get through, or both.

Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing


  • Joined Jul 2013
Re: Fencing for shetlands
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2018, 01:22:16 pm »
Proper stock fencing and you won't have any issues at all :) For internal divisions, you can use electric fencing if they are used to it! You could also put electric in front of the wall! But where possible stock fencing is the best option :)


  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Fencing for shetlands
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2018, 01:25:58 pm »
Normal stock mesh, not just wires, but with two tensioned plain wires at the top, not barbed.  I think they are less likely to be interested in jumping into the road, than climbing up the wall into the maize field (sheep originated as rock climbers), or eating the hedge, stripping it of bark and shoving through.  Or yes, getting caught up if it's spikey.
Other places to check are the bottom of the fence, where lambs could squeeze under if the ground dips, or at gates where large lambs or small ewes can push through if the gap between the posts and the gate uprights is too wide.  Similarly they can push under a gate.  The one thing our Shetlands have never done is to jump a fence - Soays yes, Jacobs yes, the neighbour's cattle yes, but not Shetland sheep.  I would fence the whole field.

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie


  • Joined Jun 2016
Re: Fencing for shetlands
« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2018, 07:59:35 pm »
We have a mixture of ryelock and the horizontal tensioned wire/alternating barb type, never had a breakout yet, but in an ideal world I'd want it all ryelock.


  • Joined Nov 2017
Re: Fencing for shetlands
« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2018, 08:04:19 pm »
Thank you, that's definitely helped and put my mind at rest. The wall is very high as it'sthe edge of a dairy farm - and whatever fencing we choose will be put around the perimeter including the sides next to the hedging and field.

Thank you everyone! :)

Black Sheep

  • Joined Sep 2015
  • Briercliffe
    • Monk Hall Farm
Re: Fencing for shetlands
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2018, 08:05:07 pm »
with two tensioned plain wires at the top

I'd rather have one wire at the top and the net set higher up the post with a line of plain wire at the bottom if needed to close a gap. If something tries to jump the fence and you have two lines of wire it is easy for them to get a leg between the two and as they go over the wires flip round each other trapping the leg, leading to unpleasant injuries. Not just the sheep but local deer too - which apart from the harm to the animal become an issue to deal with as you can't get close enough to free them without risk to yourself.


Fencing for shetlands

Started by egglady

Replies: 8
Views: 3008
Last post July 06, 2010, 09:32:59 am
by egglady
new to Shetlands

Started by Lostlambs

Replies: 6
Views: 2353
Last post February 19, 2011, 04:53:26 pm
by Lostlambs

Started by jaykay

Replies: 32
Views: 9114
Last post September 26, 2011, 08:57:16 am
by Brucklay
Zip and the Shetlands

Started by Brucklay

Replies: 8
Views: 2551
Last post November 11, 2011, 07:33:14 pm
by Brucklay

Started by Fowlman

Replies: 12
Views: 3262
Last post May 04, 2012, 01:22:29 pm
by Fowlman

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Little Peckers

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2019. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS