Preventing bird damage to crops remains a top priority for farmers since the dawn of time. When bird feeding is unmitigated, crop yields are greatly reduced, which deals a significant economic blow. Currently in the US alone, up to a quarter of crops are lost each year due in part to bird activity. In the developing world that number doubles. When birds are comfortable enough near a plentiful food source and safe environment, they then begin to settle in. Then nesting begins, and thereafter produce more offspring which feed on crops. However, by using RoBird® to enforce a sense of depredation among resident birds, nesting is prevented and populations are reduced.
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Bird damage to high-value crops accounts for greater than $150 million in direct costs in the US alone (Klug, 2017). These crops include things like grains, fruits, and berries. The most problematic varieties of birds are European starlings, blackbirds, and crows. In Australia the fruit crop industry suffers an annual $300 million loss. Globally, blueberry crop loss averages about 30%. Although birds are simply acting on their natural survival instinct, they present a problem for agriculture that farmers must resolve in order to protect vital crops.
Crops on farms and orchards provide a highly nutritious and plentiful food source. Grasslands are protein-rich with insects, and even freshly sowed fields offer nourishment from seeds. Because the food source is so easy to find and abundant, it is very difficult to successfully chase away birds and prevent them from returning without persistent action. Farmers know that completely static measures such as scarecrows and other effigies, can even attract birds.
Bird Deterrent Methods
Static and silent measures are ineffective because birds do not learn to associate it with food with repercussions. Birds will eventually habituate to loud noises emitted by air cannons, long range acoustic devices, and pyrotechnics as well. These methods, in addition to other visual deterrents like green lasers, are ineffective if there is no genuine threat to safety to reinforce the perception of predation. Birds will either leave immediately or remain, and will return quickly when the bothersome sound or light is gone. Overcoming habituation is precisely what RoBird® was designed to do.
OTHER INEFFECTIVE SOLUTIONS
A popular method, is a non-lethal and crop-friendly chemical pest deterrent. However, this tool does not always show promising results either. Netting also presents a greater problem when birds manage to get under the net through gaps or holes. They find their way in, destroy crops, and then die after they cannot find their way out.
Newer hazing and deterring technologies are therefore becoming more popular, such as unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). UAS, commonly called drones, are becoming more popular as hazing tools, because they are not stagnant. Thus the RoBird® bird drone is a leading solution, ideal for agriculture. RoBird® solves problems of the natural world, with technology that imitates the natural world..
HOW ROBIRD® WORKS
Pilots fly RoBird® in such a realistic and unpredictable way that birds perceive it to be a real hunting raptor. Pilots can make it circle and dive, chasing birds from the ground, trees, and the airspace over agricultural lands. After several years of operation in various environments, among many varieties of birds, there is still no confirmed habituation.
Do birds threaten your agricultural production? Are you looking for a highly efficient, sustainable, and animal friendly way to solve the problem and reduce damages? Please contact us, so we can craft a custom program to chase and keep the birds away. We also offer purchase of units and training to operate them.