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How to put up an electric fence for defence against martens

At electric-fence.co.uk, we specialise in electric fence systems that have been developed with marten defence in mind. Depending on the situation, we offer a variety of accessories that you can use to reliably secure your house, garden or carport. Regardless of how complicated the situation may seem, at electric-fence.co.uk we have a solution to every problem and will put together a range of fence accessories just for you.

The heart of any electric fence system is the energiser. The VOSS.miniPET "MiniSafe" energisers create an regular high-voltage pulse that is slightly lower than with other energisers and is harmless for both humans and animals. It does, however, have a strong deterrent effect on martens. Different conducting materials are used to transport this high voltage, the choice of which is dependent on the length of the fence. With our patented marten insulators you are able to optimally guide the conducting material to cover all access points a marten could use. What's special about the marten insulator is the positive/negative principle:

The positive / negative principle is used to get around the problem that a normal electric fence system only works when a good earth connection is available (topsoil, moist ground, etc). The impulse flows through the animal to the ground and then through the ground back to the energiser. Poorly conducting fence bases, e.g. wood, stone or plastics, prevent an effective shock being generated as these act as insulators between the conductor and the ground and so no electricity can flow. This problem also arises when installing electric fences onto pre-existing screen fences, carports or gutters that are often in place when dealing with martens.

We can, however, get around this problem by placing several parallel wires according to the positive / negative principle. These wires are separated by a distance that is too small for the animal to slip between them without touching both. The wires are alternately connected to the ground and the fence energiser. When two wires are touched at the same time, the shock can flow unhindered from the fence wire (positive) through the animal and into the ground wire (negative). This type of design provides a very good deterrent effect.

Before starting to plan your fence, ensure you are certain of the routes being taken by the martens and ascertain these if not. Helpful tips for this can be found under Shut martens out of the roof. Some recommendations for the accessories you will need for the most common problems are given here.

Tip:
these animals are most active during the night and leave their sleeping place. Between the dusk and dawn is therefore the a good time to install the electric fence.

Warning:
avoid taking any action to shut out martens during the breeding period from March to June so that the helpless baby animals do not become separated from their mothers!

Recommendations for the right electric fence you will need for the most common problems are given here.

  • Access to the gutters
  • Securing the drain pipe
  • Direct access using the wall of the house
  • Access via slatted fences or carports
  • Securing trees
  • Protecting fish ponds
  • Protecting chicken coops / protecting bird houses / protecting cages

Access to the gutters

90 % of martens get inside via the gutters.
We have developed special gutter insulators for this very reason. (Item no. 46010, 46001)

Installing the patented gutter insulator is a simple way of blocking off the marten's most popular entry point. These insulators are easily clamped to the gutter bead and securing using screws. No drilling is required, and your gutter remains intact. Normal orientation for the gutter insulator is around 45°, but this can be adjusted depending on the exact circumstances. We recommend the 4-wire gutter insulators (item no. 46010), as these provide the best cover for the whole top side of the gutter. Place an insulator about every 1 metre along the gutter to ensure best stability of the fence.

Before mounting the marten insulators, clean out the gutter, removing old leaves and sticks, in order to prevent short circuits. Short circuits would not be dangerous, but would reduce the effectiveness of the fence.

For marten defence, the VOSS.miniPET "MiniSafe PROTEC" 230 V mains energiser (item no. 30902) is the best choice! The lower voltage is completely safe for people and animals, yet provides the necessary deterrent effect to keep the martens away permanently. This energiser is weather-resistant and its compact size and simple operation make it perfect for those who have little experience with electric fences.

Polywire, such as item no. 42500, is the best material to use for guiding the current through the insulators. This is particularly conductive, extremely robust and therefore offers great protection! Simple to use, it is perfect for use around the house, yard and garden. For small areas, high-grade steel wire is also an option (item no. 44572). These are slightly less conductive than the polywire, but are very robust, long-lasting and almost invisible.

It is extremely important that the cabling between the energiser and the fence is undertaken with care. The connection to the energiser is made using a high-voltage cable (item no. 32615). The positive terminal (pulse supply, fence connection) and negative terminal (ground connection) on the energiser are connected directly to the conductor. When making repairs or extending the fence, use a connector (item no. 44751 or 44684) for both the connecting cable and the wire. Using a connector prevents a drop in voltage at the transition points and creates a solid mechanical and electrical connection. The connectors further serve to protect the conducting material from wear and make it much easier to re-tension the fence at a later time.

Using a fence tester you can quickly and reliably determine how well your fence system is working. Digital testers are especially convenient, allowing you read the fence voltage from the screen at a glance. (Item no. 44876). To ensure an effective deterrent, the operating voltage should be at least 1000 V.

For safety purposes, lightning protection equipment should also be installed. (Item no. 44880) This will prevent lightning strikes from affecting your energiser during a storm which would otherwise lead to irreparable damage. If your energiser is installed inside a building, then lightning protection is legally required in accordance with regulations. If you have set up your electric fence using the positive / negative principle, then you will need two separate lighting protection mechanisms, one each for the positive and negative connections.

The lightning protection mechanism is installed between the energiser and the conducting fence material on both connections. First mount the lightning protection mechanism onto a non-flammable surface near to your energiser (e.g. on a wall of the house). Next, connect it to the energiser's fence connection using a high-voltage insulated fence supply cable (Item no. 32615). The other part of your lightning protection mechanism is also connected to the fence conducting material using a high-voltage insulated fence supply cable. Now you just need to connect the grounding. For the ground connection you should ideally use a galvanised steal core lead out cable (Item no. 32601). Use this cable to connect the lightning protection mechanism to the grounding post (item no. 44219).

It is a legal requirement that any electric fence systems placed near to public roads and pathways are clearly indicated by a warning sign according. Attach clearly visible warning signs at a recommended interval of 10m to 50m, but not exceeding 90m and at entrances to paths and locations where an electric fence may not be expected carrying the phrase "Electric Fence".(Item no. 44842).

 Different warning regulations may apply depending on your state for marking electric fence systems. Find out what regulations apply in your area before installing your fence.)

Once this type of electric fence system has been installed you will be reliably protected from unwanted visitors. You will no longer need to worry. As soon as the beech martens become aware of the electrified wires, they'll no longer bother with your house!

To ensure complete long-term protection, you should leave the system in operation 365 days a year. The scent trails left by martens on your property can last for decades and work to attract other martens in the future. The fence should remain in operation to keep out these future martens too. At current electricity prices (2016), running this kind of electric fence system at full load will cost around £10/year. This amount is significantly less than the cost of the damage that martens can cause.

Securing the drain pipe

These skillful climbers often use the drain pipe to get up into the gutter. The best protection in this instance is provided by our patented drain pipe insulators (item no. 46020 and 46021). Just like the gutter insulators, these can be quickly attached by hand without the need for any drilling that would damage the drain pipe. The pulse carrying conductors on the outside will make it impossible to climb over the insulators. The clamp goes all the way around the pipe and a rubber base guarantees it won't slip out of place. The route to the roof is now secured against any climbing creatures. We have two different diameters available for different drain pipes (87–92 cm and 102–106 cm). If neither of these fit your drain pipe, then you can use an insulating band or pieces of wood to line the pipe to the right diameter.

The rest of the system is assembled the same as for the gutter.

The drain pipe insulators can be easily combined with the gutter insulators (item no. 46001 and 46010). You simple need to connect the conducting wires together. This is most easily achieved using a connector and a high-voltage cable (item no. 44751 and 32615).

Overview of components for gutters and drain pipes:

Energiser

  1. VOSS.miniPET "MiniSafe PROTEC" 230 V mains energiser (item no. 30902)

Conducting material

  1. Polywire (Item no. 42500).
  2. High-grade steel wire (Item no. 44572).

Wiring

  1. High-voltage cable (Item no. 32615).
  2. Connectors (Item no. 44751 and 44332)

Insulators

  1. Gutter insulators (Item no. 46010 and 44332) and / or
  2. Drain pipe insulators (Item no. 46020 and 44332)

Lightning protection

  1. Lightning protection equipment (Item no. 44755)
  2. Fence supply cable (Item no. 32615).
  3. Galvanised steel core lead out cable (Item no. 32601)
  4. Grounding post (Item no. 44219)

Fence testers

  1. Fence tester with digital display (Item no. 44876)

Warning sign

  1. Warning sign "CAUTION ELECTRIC FENCE" (Item no. 44735)

Direct access using the wall of the house

Walls with a rough finish or walls with recessed joints are easy for beech martens to climb. For these situations we provide special insulators with guides for 6 parallel wires 3 cm apart (item no. 44927 and 44928). These 6-wire insulators have a metric thread and are easily screwed to any available metals, plastics or ideally to our universal mount (item no. 46150) with base plate (item no. 46151). The universal mount has the advantage that you can mount the insulators vertically on the wall of the house (parallel the wall) and thus make it impossible for the martens to climb over them. All you need for putting up the universal mount is two holes and two wood screws.

Use the 6-wire start / end insulators at the beginning and end of the fence respectively (Item no. 44927). This insulator has staggered holding fixtures that ensure the wires at the start and end of the fence do not touch, which would otherwise cause a short circuit. Place a 6-wire line insulator (item no. 44928) about every 1 metre to ensure best stability of the fence.

Additional fence accessories you will need are mostly the same as those needed for securing the gutter.

Make sure that connections from the energiser to the conducting material are carefully made using insulated high-voltage cables in order to avoid any drops in voltage.

Two isolated wires are tensioned alternatively according to the positive / negative principle. One is connection to the fence connection (positive terminal) and the other to the ground connection (negative terminal) on the energiser. A distance of just a few centimetres between the wires makes it impossible for the marten to slip through without making contact with two wires at the same time and receiving an electric shock.

Overview of components for the house wall:

Energiser

  1. VOSS.miniPET "MiniSafe PROTEC" 230 V mains energiser (item no. 30902)

Conducting material

  1. Polywire (Item no. 42500).
  2. High-grade steel wire (Item no. 44572).

Wiring

  1. High-voltage cable (Item no. 32615).
  2. Connectors (Item no. 44751 and 44332)

Insulators

  1. 6-wire insulators with metric thread (Item no. 44927 and 44928)

Lightning protection

  1. Lightning protection equipment (Item no. 44755)
  2. Fence supply cable (Item no. 32615).
  3. Galvanised steel core lead out cable (Item no. 32601)
  4. Grounding post (Item no. 44219)

Fence testers

  1. Fence tester with digital display (Item no. 44876)

Warning sign

  1. Warning sign "CAUTION ELECTRIC FENCE" (Item no. 44735)

Miscellaneous

  1. Universal mount (Item no. 48015)
  2. Base plate for universal mount (Item no. 46151)

Access via slatted fences or carports

Adjacent slat fences or carports are used by martens for getting easy access to houses. To securely block of these routes we provide special insulators with 7 parallel wires set 3 cm apart (item no. 44331 and 44332). The 7-wire insulators have a wood thread and are easily screwed to wooden materials. The 7-wire insulators are easily attached to stone walls using an 8 mm rawplug.

Use the 7 wire start / end insulators at the beginning and end of the fence respectively (Item no. 44331). This insulator has staggered holding fixtures that ensure the wires at the start and end of the fence do not touch, which would otherwise cause a short circuit. Place a 7-wire line insulator (item no. 44332) about every 1 metre to ensure best stability of the fence.

Additional fence accessories you will need are mostly the same as those needed for securing the gutter.

Make sure that connections from the energiser to the conducting material are carefully made using insulated high-voltage cables in order to avoid any drops in voltage. (See image 1)

Two isolated wires are tensioned alternatively according to the positive / negative principle. One is connection to the fence connection (positive terminal) and the other to the ground connection (negative terminal) on the energiser. A distance of just a few centimetres between the wires makes it impossible for the marten to slip through without making contact with two wires at the same time and receiving an electric shock. (See image 2)

Securing trees

Beech marten can jump up to 2 m high and 3 m wide distances. It's no surprise then that these animals often use adjacent trees to climb onto building roofs. To block off this route, use the same 7-wire insulator with wood thread as for panel fences and mount these around the trunk of the tree. You can screw the insulator directly onto the tree. If you do not wish to damage the tree, screw the insulators to a piece of board attached to the tree using a tension belt. Depending on how thick the trunk is, you'll need between 5 and 10 insulators. Optimal protection is achieved by placing the insulators at a height of 1.5–1.8 m. Use the 7-wire start / end insulator at the beginning of the fence (Item no. 44331). This insulator has staggered holding fixtures that ensure the wires do not touch, which would otherwise cause a short circuit. For the remainder, use 7-wire line insulators (item no. 44332). Stretch two isolated alternating wires through the insulators One wire should go around the tree three times and the other four times. One wire is connected to the fence connection (positive terminal) and the other to the ground connection (negative terminal) on the energiser. (positive / negative principle)

Martens will no longer have any way of climbing up the tree without getting an electric shock.

Additional fence accessories you will need are mostly the same as those needed for securing the gutter.

Make sure that connections from the energiser to the conducting material are carefully made using insulated high-voltage cables in order to avoid any drops in voltage.

Overview of components for panel fences, carports and trees:

Energiser

  1. VOSS.miniPET "MiniSafe PROTEC" 230 V mains energiser (item no. 30902)

Conducting material

  1. Polywire (Item no. 42500).
  2. High-grade steel wire (Item no. 44572).

Wiring

  1. High-voltage cable (Item no. 32615).
  2. Connectors (Item no. 44751 and 44332)

Insulators

  1. 7-wire insulators with wooden thread (Item no. 44331 and 44332)

Lightning protection

  1. Lightning protection equipment (Item no. 44755)
  2. Fence supply cable (Item no. 32615).
  3. Galvanised steel core lead out cable (Item no. 32601)
  4. Grounding post (Item no. 44219)

Fence testers

  1. Fence tester with digital display (Item no. 44876)

Warning sign

  1. Warning sign "CAUTION ELECTRIC FENCE" (Item no. 44735)

Protecting chicken coops / protecting bird houses / protecting cages

It's an unfortunately common occurrence that martens break into chicken coops in order to steal the eggs. Sadly, they often don't just take the eggs, but also kill the chickens too. In order to provide reliable protection for your chickens from these night-time predators, we offer a small animal protection kit for hutches, aviaries and cages.

This kit comes with all the components needed for setting up an electric fence on your existing hutch, aviary or cage.

The Pet Control NV 1100, 230 V mains energiser is used. (Item no. 42100) This energiser is perfect for small animal fence systems around the house, yard and garden. It has a sufficiently high voltage to reliably scare off beech martens without hurting them. The recommended insulators to use are the "Classic" ring insulators with wood thread and support throughout (item no. 44332) as well as the "Spannfix" insulator (item no. 44336) for the start of the fence and for tensioning and attaching the wire. These insulators can be used anywhere and are particularly easy to attach to existing hutches and wooden posts. The polywire (item no. 44505) has the necessary robustness and conductivity for smaller fences and its fir-tree green colour blends discreetly into its surroundings. To ensure solid mechanical and electrical connection, you need to use connectors (item no. 44844).

The number of rows of wires needed depending entirely on your intended use. A single row of wire at a height of 15–30 cm will usually suffice to secure an existing fence or aviary. Where martens can get into the enclosure without touching the ground, you can of course use the positive / negative principle with our kit for protecting small animals in hutches, aviaries and cages. To do this, run several parallel lines isolated from each other. Separate these by a distance of around 3 cm making it impossible for the martens to slip between them without touching both. The wires are alternately connected to the fence connection (positive terminal) and the ground connection (negative terminal) on the energiser. When two wires are touched simultaneously, the marten receives an electric shock that he won't soon forget.

In order to easily open and close the electric fence, the kit comes with two gate handle insulators and two handles (item no. 44258 and 44263). You should place two solid end points either side of the gate, such as a shed wall or wooden post, and screw the gate handle insulators to these at the desired height for the conducting material. Stretch the wire between the handle insulators using the handle. To quickly attach the wires to the handle insulators and ensure optimal conductivity, use the quick connection kit (item no. 44426). To achieve a sufficiently high voltage on your electric fence, it is very important to ensure it has a good ground connection. For defense against martens we recommend the special grounding post with angled profile (item no. 44219) which has a large surface area to ensure good contact with the ground. Careful wiring is important with any electric fence! Use a lead out cable (item no. 44300) to create a solid connection between the ground connection on the energiser and the grounding post. The fence connection cable (item no. 44407) is used for making a connection between the fence connector and the wire. It is a legal requirement to clearly indicate electric fences. You should therefore place a warning sign clearly on your fence after putting it up (item no. 44735).

Use a fence tester (item no. 44698) to check your newly installed fence is in fully working order. This way you can easily find out the condition of your fence. To measure the voltage, insert the metal rod of the tester into the ground and rest the tip of the tester against the fence. There should always be at least 3000 V on the fence in order for it to be effective against martens.

With this accessory you can be certain of finally getting rid of martens!

Overview of fence components for protecting chicken coops / bird houses / cages:

Energiser

  1. 230 V mains energiser, Pet Control NV 1100 (Item no. 42100)

Conducting material

  1. Polywire (Item no. 42500).

Wiring

  1. High-voltage cable (Item no. 32615).
  2. Connector (Item no. 44844)
  3. Fence connection cable (Item no. 44407)
  4. Lead out cable (Item no. 44300)

Insulators

  1. "Classic" ring insulators with wooden thread (Item no. 44322)
  2. 2 x "Spannfix" insulators (Item no. 44336)

Gate handle set

  1. 2 x gate handle insulators (item no. 44258)
  2. 2 x gate handle insulators (item no. 44263)
  3. Quick connection kit (Item no. 44426)
  4. Grounding post (Item no. 44219)

Grounding

  1. Special grounding post with angled profile (item no. 44219)

Fence testers

  1. Fence tester (Item no. 44698)

Warning sign

  1. Warning sign "CAUTION ELECTRIC FENCE" (Item no. 44735)

If you are interested in our "Small animal hutch, aviary and cage protection kit" then please get in touch with us by phone or email so that we can put together a personalised quote!

Hotline:0145 234 62 04 Mon - Fri | 8am – 4pm
Email:shop@electric-fence.co.uk

How can I protect my car from marten attacks?

The simplest way to protect your car is to keep it in a garage secure from martens. Unfortunately this is not always possible, so here too we need to shut out the martens and scare them off. Martens are particularly attracted by the scents of other martens. The first thing you should do, therefore, is wash the car. If you park your car in different places each night and cross through places where different martens are living, then you will collect a range of scent marks from the animals that will attract yet more of them. The simplest trick, recommended by NABI, is to place about 1 square metre of mesh wire, preferably painted white, loosely on the ground under the engine compartment. Beech martens are very shy animals and do not like to walk over unfamiliar objects. They should keep their distance from the mesh wire and not get into the engine. This trick will only work for a short period of time, however. It can be further worthwhile to cover popular parts of the car, such as plastic tubes, ignition cables or electric lines with hard plastics. Special accessories are available from automotive retailers. To prevent outright access, a wavy wire mesh can be placed between the front wheels under the engine. An additional deterrent can be provided in the form of an ultrasound startler that is specially developed for engine compartments.

The most effective protection for your car is a marten shock mat! (Item no. 46305) Simply lay your marten shock mat underneath your car. When a marten steps onto it whilst trying to get into the engine, it receives an electric shock. This shock is not dangerous, but will scare the marten sufficiently that it won't try to get into that particular car again. The marten shock mat consists of a weather-resistant rubber mat with high-quality stainless steel strips across it. Using a 230 V energiser, these strips become energised and deliver an electric shock when touched. The size and qualities of the mat make it suitable for any vehicle and it can be easily folded away and stored in the boot when not in use.

Use the marten shock mat to keep martens away and finally give yourself complete peace of mind when leaving your car parked outdoors.

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