Japanese robot-wolf to protect farms

New technology could help Japanese farmers keep animals away from their farms. Engineers have invented the "Super Monster Wolf" to scare away wild animals from crops of rice, pumpkin and sweet potato. The solar-powered scarecrow robot looks like a real wolf. It has wolf-like hair, big scary teeth and red eyes with infrared sensors. It also has 48 different wolf howls so animals never get used to it. Super Monster Wolf will keep animals like wild boar and deer out of rice paddies, farms and fruit orchards. Farmers lose millions of dollars every year because of hungry animals.

Japan's agricultural association (JA) trialled the Super Monster Wolf in nine locations. A JA spokesman said the robot wolf greatly reduced crop losses. He said it was more effective than electric fences at keeping animals out. The robot can sense movement up to one kilometre away and make its scary sounds. The 65cm-long robot will start being made from next month. The price is $4,800 but farmers will be able to rent the wolf by the month. Japan's farmers are hoping this new electronic wolf will finally stop wild animals eating their crops.