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South Africa is today regarded as one of the ten countries in the world that suffer most from damage caused by birds to crops and fresh produce. Farmers experience losses that run into billions because of inadequate bird control. In the poultry industry, furthermore, there is the continuous threat of bird flu.
Solutions for bird control vary from gas cannons, to which the birds tend to become immune, to expensive net covering, the well-known scarecrow and even employing labourers to chase birds by kicking up a din – hitting a stick on a milk pail or an empty oil tin.
A Netherlands company, however, has come forward with a unique solution that control birds effortlessly and is also environmentally friendly. The Agrilaser of the Bird Control Group has a multitude of application possibilities to get rid of birds on airport runways and helicopter landing pads, and to keep unwanted birds away from rooftops, window sills and banish birds from crop lands.
Tests undertaken on Meduri Farms in Jefferson, Oregon, USA, showed a success factor of 99% less bird activity on 68,1 hectares of blueberries, resulting in a 33% production increase. In the Canberra district in Australia an 80% drop in bird presence was experienced in vineyards with resultant higher yields and better quality late harvest grapes.
On a dairy farm in Midway, Idaho, USA, fodder loss amounted to between 150 000 and 250 000 US dollars per year, mainly because of birds. With the aid of the Agrilaser losses were eventually limited to the minimum.
The Agrilaser is available in two models – the Autonomic and the Handheld. In clear sunshine both have an effective distance of 500 metres.
The Autonomic model is an automated model which is mounted at a fixed point and can be activated from a solar power panel. It is programmed to follow a fixed pattern through the lands or orchards. When the pattern is completed, it moves back to its neutral position for one minute when the pattern is repeated.
The laser has a very intense beam with a range or more than two kilometres at dusk. The laser is an irritation to birds and the birds later on regard the area where the laser has moved, as a physical border. It prevents them from returning.
Depending on the crop, or the configuration of buildings, it may be necessary to install several Autonomics to obtain the desired efficiency.
The Handheld model is a much more basic model with a red light gunsight for accuracy and is used more in built-up areas or between livestock pens and poultry houses in environments where the Autonomic cannot reach effectively.
When a quick calculation is done, and one accepts that crop losses on sunflower as a result of pigeons and other birds amount to approximately 200 kg/ha, then – on 500 ha – there can be an effective yield loss of 100 tons, which can amount to a monetary income loss of approximately R500 000. Should the same losses be suffered in a high income crop such as seed sunflower at R30 000/ton, the loss on 50 hectares already runs to R300 000. In grain sorghum losses may amount to 2 ton/ha, which will result in astronomical income loss.
In the poultry industry there are farms with a million laying hens. If only half on the hens have to be put down as a result of chicken flu, a standard hand calculator does not have a big enough screen to show the loss in money terms.
Agrilaser offers unique and effective solutions for problems with troublesome birds. Contact Francois Janse van Rensburg on 082-333-1330 or send an email to email@example.com