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Eyeball scarecrow gives pest birds the evil eye
A Japanese researcher, who discovered that an eyeball-like design of concentric circles scares birds, has developed a modern scarecrow that's shaped like a beach ball but is covered with a reflective optic eye. The manufacturer has sold more than 70,000 balloon scarecrows since they went on the market in Japan last year.
The eyeball design on the scarecrow is made of a reflective plastic material of the kind often found on children's toys or dolls. When you tilt it back and forth, the eye appears to move. The scarecrow is designed to swing freely on a rope or wire and, as it does, the moving eyeball frightens nearby birds.
The inventor, Yasushi Umehara, was working at the Tokyo Metropolitan Agricultural Experiment Station when he discovered that certain of butterflies and moths frightened birds. Alfe several years of experimenting with various scarecrow designs he finally settled on the "optic" eye and located a manufacturer, Wonder Trading Co., Tokyo.
The scarecrow comes in 16, 24 and 32-in. dia. models all made out of vinyl. As the lens reflects light, the eyes on the ball appear to be rolling, prompting birds to take flight.
The balloon-like scarecrows can be used around farm buildings, orchards, gardens, livestock, and in fieIds. Each ball controls an area from 60 to 150 ft. radius around it, depending on its size. The new scarecrow is being used primarily on farms in Japan but is also in use around public buildings, railway stations, religious shrines, and airports. The ball can be hung from the end of a pole set up in the field. Some farmers string wires over crops and space the balls out over them.
Optic scarecrows range in price from $14 for the smallest 16-in. dia. model to $37 for the largest 32-in. dia. model. The company is looking for distributors in the U.S. and Canada.
For more information, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, M. Marusaki, Manager, Wonder Trading Co., Ltd., No. 35-5, 5-Chome, Koishikawa, Bunkyo-Ku, Tokyo 112, Japan (ph 03 814-2056).


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1986 - Volume #10, Issue #3