The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife just got a huge helping hand in the fight against poachers – robots. No, they aren’t sending The Terminator after these lawbreakers; they’re using remote-controlled animal decoys provided by the Humane Society of the United States to trick them into going after the robotic animal.
Officers set up nearby the decoys they place in areas where hunting them is illegal, waiting for someone to take the bait. The animals can’t change walk about, but officers are able to control movements such as moving a leg or turning the animals head.
These robot decoys can be found a variety, including elk, deer, foxes and bears. Companies like Robotic Decoys and Custom Robotic Wildlife sell the robotic animals, which can be controlled using a remote – an app is in development. The construction of the decoys is the same you’ll find with typical taxidermy, only with servo motors added in key places like the neck, ears, tail and legs.
Robotic decoys are in high demand, and with costs from about $700 for a fox to around $5000 for a bear, they’re well worth the investment since each decoy brings in as much as $30,000 in fines a year.
It’s clear that poachers should quit poaching or become much more observant. We suggest you quit.