Livestock and arable producers had the chance speak to grazing experts and farmers about the opportunities available when utilising virtual fencing at LAMMA 2023.

A global leader in virtual fencing with more than three years of use on UK farms, Nofence uses a combination of GPS, cellular communication, audio signals, and solar power.

Using the Nofence smartphone app, virtual fence perimeters can be created and monitored while working with animal behaviour. This allows livestock to graze within set perimeters with no physical fencing.

“When an animal steps over a Nofence boundary, the collars emit an audio cue to warn it of the boundary perimeter. If the animal does not turn around upon hearing the predictable audio cue the collars issue an electric pulse.

"The collars also track animal location and are developed with solar panels to ensure long-lasting battery life throughout the grazing season,” says Synne Foss Budal, General Manager for Nofence UK.

“With Nofence, we train the animals to listen for their fence boundary. So, we are still relying on the animal’s senses to stay within the grazing parameter, but it is hearing rather than visual.”

Opportunities for different livestock systems

With more than two years of experience in the UK, Nofence has proven to be suitable for both conservation and intensive grazing systems.

“The technology has proved to excel in a diverse set of applications,” says Ms Budal. “Our trial work and customer experience have shown that cattle can be grazed on intensive rotational and strip systems while successfully maintaining tight covers.”

Nofence has also been a popular tool for upland producers wanting to maximise land usage and better manage grazing without investing in physical fencing infrastructure.

“It’s also a game-changer for farmers and grazers integrating livestock into arable systems, allowing for flexibility in grazing management while significantly reducing labour and infrastructure costs associated with setting up a grazing system on arable land,” she says.