Baudin’s black cockatoos are notorious for their love of pome and stone fruit, which is something growers in south-west Western Australia aren’t too happy about. Current methods to ward these birds off, such as fruit netting and scaring techniques, are often expensive, labor intensive and noisy. Also, the smart cockatoos quickly adapt, with many scaring techniques becoming less effective over time.
That is why BirdLife Australia and orchardists in Dwellingup, Western Australia, are joining forces to tackle the issue. A trial set-up use an innovative bird-friendly autonomous laser deterrent system, developed by the international Bird Control Group, to keep these critically endangered birds off the orchards. Laser deterrents present an opportunity for a long-term, bird-friendly orchard management.
“The non-harmful laser is dynamic, and the constantly changing path of the beam means the birds have a much harder time adapting to the ‘threat’,” said Michelle Kerr from Bird Control Group’s local partner Bird Beam.