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Innovation

Japan’s creepy robot wolf scares away crop-raiding deer, bears

The robot wouldn’t look out of place as a Halloween decoration on someone’s porch.
Written by Charlie Osborne, Contributing Writer on

A Japanese town has deployed robot wolves in the hopes of scaring away bears and other wildlife that can damage crops -- or potentially injure residents. 

The robot, simply named "Monster Wolf," is being tested in a town called Takikawa, located on the Hokkaido island in Northern Japan. 

See also: Hyundai made a walking car (no, really)

As reported by JAPANkyo, the 'scarecrow' has been created by Ohta Seiki and measures roughly 24-inches long, sporting a furry body, four legs, red, glowing eyes, and inbuilt speakers. 

Motion-based infrared sensors are embedded in the wolf, and when triggered, Monster Wolf will scream out one of 40 different sounds, including howls and growls.

CNET: Hyundai reportedly wants to buy Boston Dynamics, maker of everyone's favorite robot dog

As shown in the video below, the sounds are certainly enough to scare off any wildlife -- and potentially people, too. 

According to the publication, the wolf can also be set to howl at particular intervals -- and since being tested in a botanical garden in Sapporo last year, incidents of animals such as deer destroying the park's foliage has decreased by 90%. 

TechRepublic: Survey: Is your co-worker a robot?

When it comes to tests in Takikawa, the purchase of the wolves was prompted by an increase in bear sightings and dozens of attacks, as well as two that proved fatal. Following an emergency meeting of local officials, the two Monster Wolf robots were set to safeguard the town. 

No bears have been encountered since they arrived. 

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