Printable Pest Control

3D Printing & Imaging Gardening Home Science
Printable Pest Control

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!]

4 thoughts on “Printable Pest Control

  1. john personna says:

    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.

Comments are closed.

Discuss this article with the rest of the community on our Discord server!

I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.

View more articles by Sean Michael Ragan


Maker Faire Bay Area 2023 - Mare Island, CA

Escape to an island of imagination + innovation as Maker Faire Bay Area returns for its 15th iteration!

Buy Tickets today! SAVE 15% and lock-in your preferred date(s).