“Can’t we all just get along?” gardeners implore, exasperated to keep pests out of their gardens. It can be agonizing to watch plants, fruits and seeds get devoured by rabbits, gophers and birds. Yet not everyone feels comfortable poisoning and killing a wild animal for the sake of sheer “convenience.” Nor do they want to spray harmful pesticides and chemicals on the food they’ll be eating. That’s where the $30 Easy Gardener 8021 Garden Defense Electronic Owl – Sound and Motion Sensored comes in. This cute gizmo scares away garden predators with a turn of its electronic head and a startling “HOOT!” Gardeners can rest easy knowing that their plunder is kept safe by the watchful eye of an animatronic owl.
The manufacturer of the Easy Gardener 8021 Garden Defense Electronic Owl – Sound and Motion Sensored says that this owl “frightens birds, squirrels, rabbits, rodents and other destructive pests,” while also making “an attractive lawn ornament or patio accent.” To use, you simply install the owl on a pole or hang it from a tree. Some people perch the owl up high, while others put it closer to the areas it’s protecting. Sound and motion sensors pick up the movement of animals and cause the owl to elicit a realistic “HOOT!” This model of the Great Horned Owl is intimidating to many other animals and runs off three AA batteries. For the best results, the manufacturer says you should “reposition the owl decoy every few days.”
The Easy Gardener 8021 Garden Defense Electronic Owl – Sound and Motion Sensored has a 3/5 rating at Amazon, with 15 positive 4 or 5 star reviews and 19 unfavorable 1 or 2 star reviews. The satisfied buyers say that the owl worked great to deter birds from roosting in their car ports and on their porches. However, those who wanted to use the owl as an outdoor pest deterrent for the garden seemed disappointed by the quality of the owl, which didn’t seem to weather rain or dirt very well. Some people reported that they loved the owl’s hoots and motion sensor capabilities, while others found it to be annoying — especially when it went off early in the morning or late in the evening. The happiest buyers moved their owls each day as they walked outdoors to keep the pests guessing, the most dissatisfied customers were the ones who left their owls in one stationary spot, only to find other birds pooping and pecking on it.
One reviewer at “Yard Lover” complained, “Maybe I got a defective one, but during the daytime, it never worked. The birds were feasting on my grass seed. But the first night, the darn thing moved its head and hooted all night long while the contented birds slept on a full stomach! The next morning I heard a complaint from the neighbor. I’m sending it back.” Similarly, another reviewer at ‘Shopping Tips’ reported that the owl only hooted and moved once. Some consumers also argue that the owl is “cheaply made.” A consumer reported, “There are some flaws that need attending… it is not water proof.” This reviewer added that some of the plastic breaks off as well. “This Owl worked great until it rained, and then it went wacky!” says another dissatisfied customer. “Now it goes off when the wind blows and sometimes for no apparent reason!” It seems the Easy Gardener 8021 Garden Defense Electronic Owl – Sound and Motion Sensored held a lot of promise but could use some tweaking of its many flaws.
A well designed Shish Odoshi fountain may be helpful in scaring away seed eating birds as well. According to the traditional Japanese gardeners, the clacking sound of bamboo spout has been well known to keep Deers away. Check out this squidoo lens on How To Design A Shishi Odoshi to learn more about building your own shishi odoshi fountian.
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