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The Fence Post

Philadelphia Zoo Revolution

November 5, 2018 | by Joe Morrell

Philadelphia Zoo Introduces "Zoo 360"tiger

Circling Through and Around

Zoo 360 is a campus-wide network of exploration trails--for animals. Featuring elevated trails surrounded with see-through hexagonal wire mesh that allow animals to roam above, across, and around the park. Animals are able to explore, circle through and around visitors, who can see them through tunnels of galvanized mesh, creating more interest and exercise for the animals and revolutionizing the experience for visitors. This allows animals to be observed in action and doing more of what they would do in the wild.  Rather than existing in stationary exhibits--animals can wander, be more active and are less bored, which: 

  • enhances their quality of life
  • lets them travel longer distances
  • allows them to explore a variety of environments
  • links habitats, where appropriate

Some examples:

  • Treetop Trail--smaller primates can visibly walk or swing through tops of trees.                                                                                                                                                monkey 
  • Gorilla Treeway--higher places to observe and explore with an extensive area to move about.                                                                                                                gorilla 
  • Big Cat Crossing--tigers, lions, jaguars, leopards, pumas, and others are able to prowl about and get some exercise.                                                          leopard 
  • Meerkat Maze--an underground world where Meerkats can do what they do--running, digging, popping their heads out of their burrows and observing the scene above.                                                                                                                                                                             meerkat  

Here is a video that will give you a look at the latest developments at the Philadelphia Zoo.

And these smart folks at the zoo know that stainless steel mesh resists rust, corrosion, and stands up to harsh chemicals. They also use rust resistant vinyl coated mesh which resists destructive elements such as acid rain and guards against abrasion while the black coating works as an invisibility cloak, creating an non-distracted view--much better than green and not as prone to glare as the galvanized grey. And the happy answer here is less maintenance because the galvanization is reinforced with highly bonded PVC which extends the life of the fence indefinitely. 

The enhanced animals' experience enriches our experience.

Inside those walls of mesh--an animal's environment is improved through the provision of:

  • trees with various levels for perching
  • vines
  • a variety of ground, soil and rock modifications
  • nesting and den possibilities
  • programs of positive reinforcement that stimulate cognitive abilities
  • familiar and unfamiliar scents
  • recordings of sounds that would be heard in the wild
  • food that is hidden, buried or scattered so that an effort must be made to attain it as in the wild
  • toys that would be of particular interest to a given species
  • programs where you can sponsor a specific animal and also make contributions for toys etc.                           

Progress is being made and the Philadelphia Zoo is evidence of that. We here at Louis Page applaud all this innovation and fine work!

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Topics: wire mesh, cages, zoo, Wire Mesh for Zoos, vinyl coated, hex mesh

Vinyl Coated Welded Wire Mesh & Fence at Zoo New England

December 16, 2010 | by Duncan Page

Protection Reinforced

Zoo New England operates Franklin Park Zoo in Boston and Stone Zoo in Stoneham, MA. Both locations use vinyl coated welded wire meshes and fencing in quite a variety of applications.

black vinyl coated welded wire fence

In the picture above, both 1" x 2" and 2" x 4" vinyl coated welded wire meshes are attached to rail fences and wooden posts to create an attractive and durable barrier around this display area.

  • The tough, securely bonded vinyl coating resists abrasion and is ideal to use in heavy traffic areas.
  • The black coating is less distracting to the eye. 
  • This wire fence will last a long time, reducing both the frequency of replacement and cost of repairs.

vinyl coated welded wire mesh covers duck box

Here, two different sizes of vinyl coated welded wire meshes cover the top of a box holding a duck undergoing medical attention. The vinyl coating protects the wire from corrosion, an important feature in areas exposed to constant moisture.

vinyl coated welded wire cockatoo display Franklin Park Zoo

16 gauge 1/2" x 1" mesh encloses this cockatoo display. The attractive vinyl coating protects the wire underneath from corrosion. The surface is tough, though softer than bare wire.

vinyl coated welded wire mesh avairy Franklin Park Zoo

Small, lightweight vinyl coated welded wire mesh makes excellent netting to block off the top of an aviary. This mesh is very durable and longer lasting than plastic netting. Cost of replacement is reduced.

vinyl coated welded wire fence Franklin Park Zoo

Heavy 1-1/2" x 1-1/2" vinyl coated mesh is used as a fence along with stainless steel netting, making a strong enclosure for this display.

vinyl coated welded wire mesh entrance Franklin Park Zoo.

Vinyl coated 1" x 2" welded wire mesh (turned on its side) makes a secure airlock-type transition between two display areas. Mesh is fastened to a wood frame. Coated mesh really stands up for use in high traffic areas.

tow layers of vinyl coated welded wire fence Franklin Park Zoo

For even more security, heavy gauge vinyl coated fences are attached to both sides of a wood post and rail fence. Small hands cannot reach into the display and the fence cannot be climbed.

Vinyl coated welded wire meshes come in a wide variety of gauges and mesh sizes. Something suitable is available for every application.prairie dogs Franklin Park Zoo

Can you think of other uses for these meshes in other locations - around the farm or home?


Duncan Page signatureDuncan Page

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Topics: zoo, vinyl coated wire

Wire Fence Mesh Used at Franklin Park Zoo, Boston MA

October 26, 2010 | by Duncan Page

woven wire fence at Franklin Park Zoo

Franklin Park Zoo in Boston and Stone Zoo in Stoneham, Massachusetts use different types of woven wire meshes and fences.

When strength, height, and larger openings are required, woven fences that are galvanized are used. Deer and wildlife fence is a popular choice. Available in a 96" height, the mesh has graduated openings between the horizontal wires with smaller openings at the bottom of the fence. Vertical stay wires are 6" apart. 12.5 gauge high-tensile wires and fixed knot construction make it very strong. Class 3 galvanizing ensures a long lifetime. This is a versatile fence that can be used for both four-legged and two-legged animals.    

deer & wildlife fence and pasture deer & wildlife fence large birds









Another type of fence used is 2" x 2" woven non-climb mesh. Made from lighter 16 gauge wire, it can be used to make enclosures for smaller animals and birds. Top and bottom wires are heavier 14 gauge. The square deal knots that are used hold the horizontal and vertical wires securely in place, yet the fence has some flexibility which allows it to conform to the irregularities of the ground. The mesh has an open feel and is easy to see through. In the picture below the fence is used for the vertical sides of the display.

16 gauge 2"x2" mesh woven non-climb fence

These are some of the different types of fencing used at the two zoos. What types of wire meshes have you observed at the zoos you have visited?



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Topics: zoo

Woven Top Netting Used In Zoo Displays

March 26, 2010 | by Duncan Page

flight pen top netting Birmingham zoo

Top Netting used at the Birmingham Zoo - attached to 12.5 gauge woven 2" x 4" mesh fence

You have a collection of valuable birds you want to contain within a certain area. You want the birds to be safe from predatory birds from above. You want to cover a large area. You want a high ceiling or open roof. Installation needs to be as easy, as safe and as fast as possible. The material you use must be soft and flexible, enough so that the birds will not hurt themselves when they come in contact with the netting while they are in flight.

What can satisfy all these requirements?

Flight Pen Top Netting

Used by zoos, commercial game bird farms, animal rehabilitation, and backyard hobbyists. The multiple strands of woven black polypropylene provide protection for your birds. Experience the benefits:

      • Rolls are lightweight and easy to handle
      • Support structure can be less robust, less expensive
      • Large size rolls make it easier to cover large areas
      • No need to make a patchwork of smaller rolls
      • Flexibility makes Top Net softer - less chance of injuring you and your birds
      • Available in a wide variety of roll sizes, weight and mesh sizes
      • UV resistant for long life
      • Top Net will not rust
      • Mesh is resistant to mildew and rot

White Netting

Do you have any birds that need safety and protection?

signature   Duncan Page


Top Netting for Flight Pens


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Topics: top netting, zoo

Woven Wire Fence & Mesh Used By Zoos

March 9, 2010 | by Duncan Page

Containment, Exclusion, Security

There are many different styles of woven wire fence that can be successfully used in zoo displays. These wire fencing products can also be put to use around the home, farm and public areas such as parks and recreational areas. Think of these fences when you have any situation where animals need to be contained or excluded.

double wattled cassowary & 2

Double Wattled Cassowary & 2" x 4" woven wire mesh - Birmingham Zoo

 12.5 gauge 2" x 4" mesh

Woven 2" x 4" mesh is made with heavier 10 gauge selvage wires running along the top and bottom edge of the fence. This gives the fencing greater strength. Strong 12.5 gauge wire makes up the balance. A third piece of 12.5 gauge wire forms a smooth stiff knot around the horizontal and one piece vertical wires securely holding them together. Knotted construction gives the fence some flexibility, making it easier to install on uneven ground. Woven 2" x 4" mesh is available in three different finishes: Class 1 galvanized, Class 3 galvanized and Class 3 black. It can be used effectively with very large birds, other animals such as dogs, horses and zebras and any other animal that requires a strong fence.


woven 2

Woven 2" x 2" wire mesh fence on sides of display - Franklin Park Zoo

16 gauge, 2" x 2" mesh

Made with the same knotted construction as the 2" x 4' fencing, this lighter weight woven wire fence is made using 14 gauge wires on top and bottom and 16 gauge wires for the filler. As with its heavier brother, the fencing has inherent flexibility. 2" x 2" mesh can be used with birds and other small animals - situations where a lighter fence will be effective.



two deers deer & wildlife fence  - ostrich display

Woven Deer and Wildlife Fence - Franklin Park Zoo

Deer and Wildlife Fence

Woven from 12.5 gauge high tensile wire, this strong heavily galvanized fencing can be used with many different kinds of animals. All feature spacing between horizontal wires that graduate from small at the bottom to large at the top. Heights range from 4' through 10'. Horizontal and vertical wires are held together with fixed knot construction. Deer and wildlife fencing is available with a Class 3 galvanized finish. Some heights have a Class 3 black finish. The strength and height make this an ideal fence to use with a wide range of animals.



deer fence gates

Deer fence gateway - Birmingham Zoo

Alligator behind wire mesh

 Do you have any unusual animals that you want to keep in - or out? Check out our Emu blog.

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Topics: woven wire, zoo

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