Innovative Spirit

These High-Tech Scarecrows Will Keep Pesky Creatures Away

From robots to digitized recordings, farmers are upping their game when it comes to protecting their crops

The remote-controlled 3-D-printed raptor known as RoBird, built by a Dutch firm, swoops and soars. (Vincent Jannink/AFP/Getty Images)
smithsonian.com

Modern scarecrows are a drastic departure from the straw buddy from The Wizard of Oz. An upscale array of intimidating devices deters more than just, well, crows. Cats, raccoons and other tricky creatures may also be targeted.

Some 21st-century scarecrows do their work by growling like thunder. Others prowl the skies, rumble, spew water or just look and act mean. Here are seven of the most remarkable techno-scarecrows.

Devil dog

Like something out of a Godzilla-style horror movie, the solar-powered, Japanese-made Super Monster Wolf robot is designed to scare wild boar, deer and other animals. The 65-centimeter-long deterrent boasts flashing eyes and fangs. Plus, it howls in varying ways to prevent invaders from adapting to its presence. Crop losses reportedly plunge wherever the fiendish gadget stands guard.

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