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Housing And Fencing In Alpaca Farming

Housing And Fencing In Alpaca Farming

The housing and fencing of animals in alpaca farming follows certain rules and conventions. Alpaca farming does not demand luxurious holdings as alpaca are very simple animals. Providing shelter for your alpaca can be easy and affordable.

Housing

Barns, outbuildings and run-ins are common.

Though they evolved in the mountainous regions of South America and are adapted to unpredictable environments, to get maximum profitability from alpaca it is advisable to adequately house them. Rain, sleet, slush, the blazing sun and the onslaught of wind are uncomfortable atmospheric conditions for even these adaptable creatures. A run-in can be built of three sides with a roof and the rear side facing prevailing winds. This will keep your alpacas comfortable during unfavorable weather conditions. Wood, bamboo and straw are traditionally used for these shelters. More modern run-ins have actually been built from masonry, zinc sheets and canvas tarpaulins with great utility and success. Ensure the floor level is at least 6 inches (15 cm) above the terrain and sloped to minimize dampness.

If you have the funding, go for a traditional barn. Your comfy creatures will thank you. A modest barn on 5 acres (.02 km2), constructed to house 25 alpacas, could cost just $14,000 if resources are used efficiently

Housing and fencing alpaca is a prudent practice in alpaca farming.

Fencing

Wood or metal pipe corrals, chain link fencing and electric fencing are common.

Fences keep alpaca safe. Being gentle, grazing creatures, they could easily wander into highways or even factory compounds when unattended. Domestic dogs like a nearby neighbor’s pet could actually do a lot of damage to your alpaca stock. Some dogs can go berserk and kill for fun. You could lose ten alpaca in a single such scenario. Chain link fencing is most often recommended due to its strength, flexibility and openness. A 5 foot (1.5 m) high fence with metal posts 5 or 6 feet (1.5 or 1.8 m) apart will be strong. Ensure that fence posts are dug at least 18 inches (.5 m) deep and that properly mixed concrete is poured in and allowed to cure. Some farmers use hollow concrete blocks in a continuous line around the perimeter and fill cavities with concrete. Up to 4 tiers of blocks can be utilized depending on soil type. It is wise to employ the use of steel rebar, preferably 0.5 inches (12 mm) in diameter, in every other block cavity for enhanced structural rigidity of wall base. The chain link mesh is then placed atop this block work.

Mobile metal fences have become popular. They can be moved and gate positions can be changed at will. Hollow metal pipe welded and fabricated into a secure open partition is also frequently used. Traditional wood rail fencing is often too easy to breach. Ensure gates have secure latches. The alpaca should not be able to push their head through the fence as they may strangle themselves. Males and females are usually kept separately. This is mainly to control breeding. Planned reproduction goes a far way in determining fleece quality and the physical well-being of the alpaca. Alpaca farming is more profitable when the security and well-being of the stock is assured.…

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How to Repair a Wood Fence

How to Repair a Wood Fence

Your neighbors will always appreciate the appearance of a sturdy fence on your lot in good repair. The average wood fence lasts only 12-15 years — depending on the weather conditions in your area, your wood fence may not even last that long! If you recently purchased an older home, be sure to investigate the condition of each wood fence, and be prepared to make a repair or two.

Your wood fence endures a tremendous amount of wear-and-tear and is continually subject to natural decay. A high wind, a fallen tree, or even an out-of-control car can deal the dying blow to your once-sturdy wood fence. Most likely, several sections will require repair or replacement during your home ownership. Check out these helpful do-it-yourself steps to save the money you would pay a carpenter to repair your wood fence!

1. Gather the proper tools. The tools you need for your repair include a standard shovel, a post-hole shovel, a wheelbarrow, a tape measure, a hammer, a level, and some muscle. You may also need a friend to help you with this repair project.

2. Determine which parts of your fence need repair, and gather materials. Determine which panels are damaged, and check if your fence has busted, loose, or badly leaning posts. You will need about two 80 lb. bags of concrete per every three posts to be replaced. With the exception of a handful of 16-penny-nails or screws, these concrete bags are the only outside materials you will need to repair your wood fence.

3. Tear out the pieces of your existing fence that require replacement. The best way to tear out fence panels (other than by a reciprocating saw if your entire fence needs ripped apart) is to simply peel out these fence panels with a large hammer.

Once you have removed the appropriate panels, get rid of any damaged fence posts. Unless you want to dig up all the existing concrete around each post (a backbreaking job that leaves massive craters where your posts were!), it is best to cut each damaged post off flush with the ground, and to simply offset the replacement posts by 4.’

4. Measure carefully the location of your new posts. Mark the spot for your first post, and take your post-hole shovel to dig down two feet deep at this point. (If your soil is very sandy, then dig close to 3′ if possible.) Repeat this process for each new post needed and drop a post down into each hole to prepare for the addition of new concrete.

5. Mix your concrete. Dump a full bag of concrete mix into a wheelbarrow. Roll out your water hose and turn on the water lightly. Add a little water at a time as you mix and churn your cement mix. When the resulting consistency is about that of oatmeal, you are ready to pour the concrete into your post holes.

6. Pour your concrete. Pour some concrete into each hole from your wheelbarrow while a helper holds your post level — do not over-fill the hole! Leave the cement one or two inches below the top of the soil. While the concrete is still wet, accurately level around your post a final time. Repeat this process for all new posts. On a hot day, allow 3-4 hours for your concrete to set before installing fence panels. On a cooler day, you may need to let the concrete set overnight.

7. Install your new fence panels and make any final adjustments. Start from one end of your wood fence and set your first wood panel into its appropriate place. Have your helper hold the panel while you lift one end even with the existing fence panel, and fasten that end to your post. You may want to level the top of the new panel before fastening its opposite end, however, most fences do not run level but flow with the land. Therefore, it is smart to install your new fence pieces at the same distance from the ground as your existing fence pieces — often approximately an inch off the ground. You may need to trim your final fence panel to fit into it into your last section. Finally, cut off the top of your new posts if they are taller than the rest of the fence — and your repair is complete!

Following these steps for your do-it-yourself fence repair job will definitely save you money. Maybe you will want to try building your own wood fence from scratch next time! In this meager economy, do-it-yourself repair is a great way to grow resourceful — a great skill in any economy. As you repair your wood fence, always remember to measure twice and most importantly, to be …

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Cedar Fence Post Caps – Buying Guide

Cedar Fence Post Caps – Buying Guide

There are some things that you should know when shopping for the right cedar fence post caps. With the right information, you can get the best deals in the market. With a wooden fencing, you also have to get a suitable product for all your posts or stakes. Measuring the posts is of utmost importance so that you can get the right size of caps. Ipe and Trex is a trusted company when it comes to fence supplies. Shop from online stores and in no time you will be able to preserve the privacy of your property.

Living in Maine can be more peaceful if you have a fence to protect your property. If you have a horse, you can benefit from a ranch-style fence with post caps. Some people think that these are unnecessary accessories. But you see, it is actually an added protection that prolongs the life of the wooden fencing. The wear and tear of harsh weather conditions enter the wood from the top which can lead to damage over time. With a post cap, you no longer have to worry. It acts like a shield that prevents water and other factors from damaging the interior.

Measure the size of the posts. Most of the products are advertise by sizes. For instance, if you’re looking at a 2 by 4 post cap, it means that it’s actual is only 1.5 by 3.5. This is the finished portion of the wood. Even if you ask a carpenter, they will tell you the same thing. When purchasing cedar, you can them in unfinished or un-milled form. When the existing posts are finished, then you will have to get post caps that are finished as well. It is vital that you physically measure the posts to be sure that you’re getting the right products.

Cedar can last for decades even when it is exposed to environmental elements. However, if you seal or paint it, the life will be prolonged. Take your time in shopping around and you can find the best deals. Depending on the number of posts you have, you will also have to get the exact number of cedar fence post caps. You can also add two more for the gates and for the balusters’ posts. The post caps are not that expensive. In fact, some brands are sold below $8 per piece. Decide on the inclusive features for best results.…

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Types of Fences

Types of Fences

There is a plethora of fences to choose from, depending on your preferences, needs, and even budget. They also differ in terms of their function, make, aesthetic appeal, and form.

Here are some of the common fences used:

Privacy Fencing: As its name suggests, these are fences that shelter owners from the prying eyes of their neighbours. They are usually incredibly large and spanning several square feet or even acres. Their gates are also massive and commonly made of steel or other sturdy materials. If these aren’t enough, a number of privacy fences are manned by guards. If not, the gates are highly automated. This is to give owners the privilege to screen visitors first before they are allowed entry.

Agricultural Fences: If you’re living near pastures or you’ve passed by the countryside, then most likely you’ve come across them. Agricultural fences serve several purposes. First, they keep predators away from their livestock. In turn, this prevents cattle and other animals from straying. Sometimes the agricultural fences also act as boundary fences, especially if several farmers or livestock owners are using a large plot of land. A lot of agricultural fences are chain link. They permit a good view of the livestock but have small-enough holes predators and animals cannot immediately pass through.

Temporary Fences: They are often used in properties where construction is ongoing. This ensures that passersby are aware of what’s going on and they can watch out for any kind of hazard. They are also put up in a plot of land as way of warding off trespassers or thieves. Temporary fences are easier to put up and uninstall, once the job is done or when the property is already occupied by a house or a commercial building. Sometimes the temporary fence blocks off the property from the eyes of curious onlookers.

Decorative Fences: You’ll have greater liberty with decorative fences since your main priority is aesthetics. They are normally used to adorn gardens, patios, and walkways. They are also usually short.

The fences also differ in terms of materials used. The most common and affordable option is the steel. It is valued for its resistance to moisture, so it’s more ideal in pools. Wood makes a very beautiful and flexible material for a decorative fence. If you want utmost privacy, besides wood and steel, you can use bricks and concrete. They are pretty expensive, but they are also very durable.…

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How Much Does An Invisible Dog Fence Cost?

How Much Does An Invisible Dog Fence Cost?

If you have a dog, and your yard is rather big, or large, you’re going to find that many dogs out there love to run away, when you get the chance. What you’re going to find out is that it’s going to get rather old to get out, leash up your dog and wait until they do their business, or do their exercise. Honestly, who wants to do this at 3 in the morning each day?

Thankfully for technology today, you can get an fence installed with your yard that isn’t visible, where you can keep your dog in your yard, when they wear a collar. What the fence will do is send out a warning signal when the dog gets close to the fence. If the dog gets too close, the collar will send a slight shock to the dog. While many people find this inhumane, it has been proven to work. Generally, a smart dog can learn this technique rather quick, and will more than likely stay in your yard.

Now, if you’re looking to get one installed, or you want to do it yourself, I wanted to show you how much you should budget, when you want to get one done for your yard.

Listed below are usually the factors that you have to consider, when you’re looking at getting a fence installed:

The brand – Each brand is going to have it’s own price tag. There are a few out there, so make sure to do your research before you go out and purchase one.

The size of your yard – The bigger your yard is, the more work that the installer is going to have to do, as well as install. Take a look at where you’re going to want to install your fence. Are there going to be any obstacles in the way at all?

Pro vs DIY – If you do it yourself, you can easily save 50%, or even more. If you go with an installation based company, they are going to charge you, based on whatever their rates are.

Generally, if you’re going to do it yourself, you’re going to find that you’re going to have to pay around.40 to.80 per foot, when it comes to your wire. This is why measuring is important. You will more than likely find that you will have to pay someone around $30+ a hour just to install the fence. While each yard is different, it’s hard to get quote, but if you factor around $2+ per foot for installation, this should give you a fairly good idea.…

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6 Reasons Why Homebuyers Are Sitting on the Fence

6 Reasons Why Homebuyers Are Sitting on the Fence

The fence is not a comfortable place. It’s not designed for sitting. Yet, many buyers in today’s real estate market are doing just that. Buyers are not ready to make an offer or they have made an offer and cannot successfully negotiate an acceptable contract with the seller.

1) The Media

The media focus is politically charged as we approach the November elections. The media focus has been on the fact that the economy has rebounded yet. The television news, interviews, political ads and commentary are confusing for buyers. The fact is that today’s economic conditions are offering buyers interest rates around 4% for a 30 year fixed rate mortgage. That buying power is huge for today’s homebuyers.

2) Waiting for the Market to Hit Bottom

Talk about a double-dip recession has scared some homebuyers that they might purchase a home today and it will go down in value. Real estate is local so having information on the local market will give buyers the information they need to know. If buyers wait for major media to tell them that the US housing market is rebounding, they will miss the bottom by 6 months. Housing market data is usually reported by quarter and the release of that information takes a few weeks after the quarter has ended.

3) Waiting for a Good Deal

“Deal” is a nasty 4-letter word. But homebuyers think in a buyer’s market they are supposed to get a good deal. Is a good deal getting the lowest price per square foot in the neighborhood? Or is it getting a 5 year old house with new stainless steel appliances, custom blinds and window treatments and a fenced backyard at $20,000 below what the seller has put into the house? Buyers generally do not want to do any work to the house so a good deal to buyers right now is move-in condition and upgrades. Buyers want granite countertops, hardwood floors and no wallpaper or custom paint. Buyers tell me they want be able to move in, make their mortgage payment and live their lives without having any huge projects or expenses ahead of them. They have to go to work to pay for the mortgage and that takes up plenty of their time.

4) Fear of Losing Their Job

Buyers are out there looking at homes and they have talked to a mortgage bank so they are pre-qualified and know what their mortgage payment will be if they buy your home. But some folks are going to work everyday fearful that their job will be eliminated or that their group will get transferred to another state. For some this fear is subconscious so they look at houses but can’t seem to find the right home. I have had prospective buyers tell me they had a dream they lose their job 2 weeks before closing. That anxiety affects them and it affects their expectations when they search for a home. The sellers agent gets the feedback “The buyers like the home but are going to continue looking.”

5) Mortgage Issues

Buyers get pre-qualified but some have heard horror stories of people getting turned down for their mortgage at the last minute. Buyers are taking longer to buy because they will start looking while they are saving for their down payment. They go to open houses and get a jump start on finding their dream home. Some buyers are eager to buy a home but they need to increase their credit score before they can get the lowest interest rate and down payment available. I have clients who want to buy but they have started their own business and have to wait to have 2 years tax returns before the bank will loan them money to buy a home, despite a 20% down payment and an 820 credit score.

6) Have a Home to Sell

Many buyers are also sellers. They are on the fence because someone else is on the fence about their home. They want to move to a different neighborhood, get closer to work or downsize since their kids are starting college. These buyers are begrudgingly on the fence, lowering their price to attract a buyer. Most of these buyers are limited by what they need to make on their home in order to buy the next home.

Homebuyers will regret waiting. When local real estate markets pop (and some already have), it happens quickly and the chances to have your choice of low-priced homes in good condition dwindles. 5 years from now 2010 buyers will be able to say, “I got a great deal in 2010 and my mortgage is only 4%. I can’t believe more people didn’t buy back then.”…

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Guidelines to Select the Best Roofing Contractor

Guidelines to Select the Best Roofing Contractor

There are numerous companies providing roofing renovation and replacement services. If you are looking for any of them then you should consider few things. These things will help you to find the best roofing contractor to provide you all desired services. There are lots of things need to be considered before selecting any roofing company. If you find the best company it can be immense rescuer for you and your house.

No matter if its commercial building or housing place, you will find the roofing contractor for all kind of services related to roof. The roof is an important part of our house so if you feel any trouble with your roof you should get it inspected immediately from any of the contractors. However, its replacement or renovation is different thing and before selecting any company lots of things need to be taken care of. Below mentioned things will help you to select the best company for your project.

Decide their experience and knowledge: Each firm will have their own experience and knowledge so if you are searching for the companies then try to find the previous history of them. Collect the details of experience of roofing construction companies and try to get the list of materials they are using to build the roof. Ask them to show you the license number of roofing construction. Companies those who are into the business of roofing contractors always keep the valid license. Most of the firms today keep telephonic executives so call them and ask about various plans and process of construction. Search over internet for reviews of such company as that will guide you about the work experience of this company. Contractor should be certified so ask the contractor to show you the certificate of course done through any institute.

Ask for Coverage: There are some firms not having insurance for their employees and some don’t keep the license of work. Discuss the same issues with other agencies and ask them to show you valid insurance coverage agreements. This will be a vital step for you as it will keep you safe in all kind of troubles come during the roof construction.

Inquire about warranty: It is another vital step you should take. Ask the company for warranty; if possible find the association that offers you longer time of warranty. Get the feedback of previous customer’s about the responses of company to queries of customers.…

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Repairing Your Home and Keeping the Price Low

Repairing Your Home and Keeping the Price Low

When it comes to home repairs keeping the price low while still achieving your goals can become very difficult. Many times it necessary to use a home repair contractor because the repair is too much or too detailed of a job for you to complete on your own. However it can be very cost efficient if you can find a way to do some of your home repairs on your own. There are many information outlets to help guide you to a successful end of your project. If you have the right tools, the time, and a general knowledge of repair it can be the difference of hundreds of dollars in expense.

There are many small home repairs that must be done every once and awhile around the house that is very beneficial to be able to fix on you own. Most sink drains especially bathroom sinks are gonna clog from time to time. With all the hair that goes down those drains and the general small size of the piping it is almost a given that it will clog up on you. While unclogging those drains may be a very dirty job it can save you a lot of money in the long run to roll up your sleeves and take the pipe apart.

Some other reoccurring home repairs that you will probably want to attempt on your own are: painting, gutter cleaning, wallpapering, tiling, repaving a driveway, and other modern inconveniences. It is very important that before you attempt your repair or remodel on your own you make sure that you have a good idea of how to get the job done. It may end up costing you more in the long run if you start a repair and have to call in outside help in the middle of the project, or if you damage something else in the home.

There might be times when the work that a job takes seems to overwhelming or you may not have the right tooling for the job. This is when you might have to think about bringing in outside help to assist you in your repair. When searching for the right home improvement contractor you are gonna want to access exactly what you want done and how much you are willing to spend on the project. Then you will have to call in different contractors to give you an estimate on the project. Most home improvement companies will give you a free estimate.

It is a very good idea to get more than one estimate to try to find the best price you can. Also if you think you might be able to attempt the project on your own you may be able to get some free tips from the contractor by asking them questions about what steps they will take if you chose them to do the job. They might give you enough information to do the job. If you do end up calling in a contractor you might want to consider get more than one project done at a time. The company may give you a discount for more work.

Another helpful tip for home improvement is looking for government grants to help you fund your repair project. Certain criteria will qualify you for such assistance. First you will have to get an estimate and then you can contact the US Department of Housing and Urban Development or HUD and ask for help to see if you qualify or look online for criteria.…

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9 Spring-Cleaning Tips for Your Garden and Deck

9 Spring-Cleaning Tips for Your Garden and Deck

Once spring has arrived, it’s time to prepare the beds for the summer growing season. Spring is the best time to repair any damage from winter weather. It’s also wise to clean up your yard before the heavy growth cycle begins. Following are nine spring garden maintenance tips to help you get ready for the summer growing season.

1. Look for winter damage. Inspect your yard for damaged or broken tree limbs that will require removal. Pay especially close attention to broken limbs that overhang structures such as your decking or cedar fence panels. Inspect your fencing, decking and any stairs or pathways for disrepair.

2. Perform a deck safety inspection. Carefully examine your decking for signs of rot, loose boards or weakness in the ledger board. Test your decking’s stability by standing in the middle and moving your feet in a hula-hoop motion; if it wobbles, you’ve got a problem. Additionally, you should test the stain on your decking with a garden hose; if the water beads up, you’re in good shape. If the water soaks in, plan on applying a new stain when the weather warms up.

3. Design new garden beds or fences. Thinking of expanding or rearranging your garden? Spring is the time to lay out new planting beds or initiate a new fence installation. Vinyl pickets, cedar fence panels, and chain link fencing are all popular choices for marking garden boundaries and keeping out small animals. When choosing a fencing material, first decide on the primary purpose of the fence installation and consider whether you’re willing to put time into regular maintenance on cedar fence panels, or whether you’d prefer the low maintenance of chain link.

4. Examine your fencing. Examine your fence for any areas that need repair, such as broken or rotting boards, popped nails and knotholes. If you have cedar fence panels, assess whether it’s time to restain your fencing.

5. Enrich the Soil with Compost. Spring is a good time to harvest compost. Mix it into your planting beds. Afterwards, ensure that the soil is moist, but not dripping wet.

6. Trim trees, grasses, and shrubs. Remove dead plants, trim diseased branches, and cut back ornamental grasses. Thin and trim summer-blooming shrubs, and prune early-blooming shrubs after they’ve flowered.

7. Eliminate weeds. Pull up any weeds growing around the perimeter of your beds, as well as any near the landscaping around your fence or decking. It is much easier to pull weeds in the spring than in any other season, as their roots are still shallow.

8. Plant. Plant trees, shrubs, bulbs and cool-season vegetables. Re-seed any sparse patches in your lawn.

9. Begin a compost pile or bin. If you don’t have a compost pile or bin, beginning in the spring means you’ll have fresh compost ready to harvest by this time next year. If you don’t have room for a large bin or pile, consider a small compost tumbler that can fit on your decking.

Once spring growth kicks in, there will be plenty to do around the garden to keep you busy well into fall. By preparing your garden now, you can save yourself time and work later.…

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Costs of Vinyl Fencing Vs Wood Fencing

Costs of Vinyl Fencing Vs Wood Fencing

When choosing between whether to install a wood fence or a vinyl fence there are several differences you need to consider. In our opinion from a cost standpoint, vinyl comes out far superior than a wood fence. When you consider long-term costs of installation, maintenance and replacement it seems a vinyl fence is the clear winner every time – despite allegations out there that indicate vinyl is more expensive.

Initial Cost

Vinyl fence materials are engineered which give them superior features over wood fence materials, and therefore they can initially be a bit more expensive then wood products. However as a result of recent economic times, good quality wood is getting more and more costly. As these price increases in wood continue to occur, and there is no doubt that they will, the initial cost of wood and vinyl fence are becoming virtually the same.

Cost of Installation

The installation process for both wood and vinyl is almost the same. They both require the same prep work for post holes and concrete, as well as proper attention to detail with measurements and utilizing clean, sharp tools. However, vinyl fence panels come with posts that are predrilled for proper hardware placement with pre-cut rails and pickets, or if you like the entire panel can even come totally preassembled. Vinyl saves you time, eliminates excess wasted material and the need to buy costly extra tools. Vinyl is by far the more cost (and time) effective choice here.

Cost of Maintenance

Anyone who has owned a wood fence is well aware of the great lengths required to maintain aesthetics and preserve the longevity of the fence. Pressure washing, sealing, scraping, stripping, staining and painting – it’s exhausting just thinking about it. The costs to maintain a wood fence are quite substantial. Now compare that to a vinyl fence which simply needs to be hosed off and wiped down on occasion. Vinyl materials come in a variety of colors with no fade guarantees*; hence staying clean, vibrant and easy to maintain.

*Bufftech Vinyl is the only manufacturer we recommend, which is the industry leader in producing superior quality vinyl fence materials, including no fade colors.

Replacement Costs

The state-of-the-art vinyl fence technology is engineered to last! Quality vinyl products come with a minimum 20 years and sometimes lifetime warranties. Other than maybe a one-year installation warranty offered by a contractor, wood fence warranties do not really exist. Wood is a naturally decaying material, that rots and bows, and although treating the wood may delay this process, it still is an inevitable result with wood. Wood just cannot withstand the harsh outdoor environments and last a lifetime like vinyl can. So the costly expense of replacing wood fences makes a vinyl fence by far the more cost effective choice yet again.

Conclusion

While initially it may seem that a wood fence is less expensive, once taking a closer look it is quickly realized that any monies saved in the beginning with wood are quickly lost after just one or two years. Over the long run, the costs between vinyl and wood cannot even compete – a vinyl fence is undoubtedly less expensive than wood.…