Farmers in Malnad and coastal areas of Karnataka and Kerala often see wild animals destroying their plants and crops. While some animals attack the farms during the day, the others are on the prowl at night.
Rajagopala Kaipangala, a farmer from Kasaragod district of Kerala, has been using a simple device with LED strip lights and AC/DC converter to scare away wild animals such as wild boar, bison, and elephant that attack during night.
Wild boars stay away
Kaipangala told BusinessLine that his decision to install LED strip lights in the farm over a year ago has yielded results. He has not faced any wild boar attack on his farm since then. He said he had studied the movements of wild boars to find the right height to hang the light source. He conducted several field trials to get the right height with the prototype unit. Wild boars avoided the farm when he placed the light source 29 cm above the ground level, he said.
When he shared his experience on social media platforms, it attracted the attention of fellow farmers and some government officials also. Following this, the Divisional Forest Officer of Kasaragod implemented this idea of installing LED strip lights to scare away wild elephants.
Kaipangala said the official informed him that the device had helped the forest officials to prevent wild elephant attacks till now.
A farmer from Sullia taluk in Karnataka, who had installed the device in his farm to tackle the attack of bison, has expressed similar views, he said.
Kaipangala suggested that LED strip light units be placed at a height of 8 ft for wild elephants and 7 ft for bison. The LED strip lights, AC/DC converters and wires cost a few hundred rupees. However, the major expense will be on power source such as solar power units and UPS units.
Mass production needed
He said the government undertakings have the capabilities to develop such units on a mass scale. If they produce such units and supply them to farmers, it will help them to great extent. Even if this device helps save 5-10 per cent of crops, it will help save crores of rupees in the farming sector, he said.
Stating that this device works only for the animals that attack the farms during night, he said farmers can improvise this device even further to get a better result.