A good solution that comes to mind might be a nice electric fence
? That way you can do what you want, compost
how you want, and even not need to worry about it as much. The big one-time expense on hotwire is the charger. I personally love solar
chargers but they're more expensive than AC or DC stand-alone chargers. I believe AC chargers are the cheapest, like 1/3 to 1/4 the price of solar
! I just like solar because it's so portable and I'm off-grid, so I don't have to have the charger right next to a battery bank.
Electric fences are high voltage at super low amperage; so the jolt may be shocking or painful, but it can't cause physical damage. Some folks say you can't get less than a 3 joule charger for bears. I've fried bears good on a 1.2 joule charger, but granted it was on a circuit less than 1/4 mile long. A shorter circuit on a higher powered charger means a much meaner POP when you hit it! A good way to train local bears on your hotwire is to bait them into touching it. Some folks do stuff like tie a hotdog to the wire and wait for the animal to try and eat the hotdog (though to me it seems it would just teach the animal to fear hot dogs...). What I did was set my grain bins, that the bear kept tipping over and rummaging through, on a rubber tire and wrap the hotwire around the metal barrel. So the barrel wasn't grounded because it was on the tire. And the next time Mr. Bear tried to get into my barrels he got zapped when he touched the metal and never tried it again. Actually that was the LAST time he rummaged through anything on the place. He figured the neighbors' hosues were predictably 'not-painful', so best to avoid my place and my scary biting objects. Woohoo!
Anywho. A hotwire, in my opinion, is a good investment. It's pennies per foot for the actual string (I prefer 6 or 9 strand polywire). You can string it from tree-to-tree and make home-made insulators if you don't want the expense of posts and clips. A good charger lasts almost forever, and your hotwire fencelines can be permanent or temporary. It can greatly deter bears, deer
, dogs, and whatever else bumps into it, keeping trees, livestock, gardens, compost/trash cans, etc. safe and untouched. If/when you decide to get dogs or livestock, it can keep them in just as easily as it keeps other stuff out
Well, not birds. Birds are hard pressed to get fried by the wire; they have to touch it with their bare face because their feathers protect them from the electricity. But you get the idea!