Find all your DIY electronics in the MakerShed. 3D Printing, Kits, Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Books & more!

Kiwi programmer and farmer John Hart of Lifeboat Farm has been experimenting with using his RepRap to produce mechanical pest control devices so he can leave off the chemical pesticides. Shown above, fused-filament butterfly decoys, spotted with a marker and mounted on stalks of plastic filament in the garden:

The stalks are quite flexible so the butterflies bob about in the wind. They look pretty realistic to me, but more importantly I’ve seen white butterflies hovering around, then leaving without touching down, all this week. Time will tell if any have the courage to sneak in to lay eggs.

The model is available as Thing #6685 by Vik Olliver. John has also developed an interesting printable flytrap, though I haven’t seen the physibles for that one posted anywhere, yet. [Thanks, Tim!]

Sean Michael Ragan

I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I write for MAKE, serve as Technical Editor for MAKE magazine, and develop original DIY content for Make: Projects.


Related

Comments

  1. I’d love to see how this works. I live at the edge of wild lands and get lots of white butterflies visiting my garden. They are my major foes. I don’t have a fabber, but I can probably cut some freehand from white Styrofoam pacing …

  2. Gronkie says:

    As an organic gardener, I’m always looking for new methods of pest control, and this one is so elegantly simple that it merits a slap on the forehead and a “Why didn’t I think of that?!” I don’t have a printer, but it could easily be cut out of a thin sheet of plastic and attached to some sort of springy plastic filament.

    Now if I could only figure out a way to scare off slugs.

In the Maker Shed