Automated Bird Laser at Summerhill Road Vineyard, Australia Video
The Summerhill Road vineyard, located within the Canberra Wine District of Australia, grows grapes for the purpose of producing premium quality, cool-climate wines. Birds, such as Starlings, Cockatoos, Currawong, Crows, Rosellas and Wattlebirds, damage the grapes. Without any bird control, this can lead to a signi cant reduction of crops (1-2 tonne per week) and increased risk of disease (reducing the quality of the fruit). Historically, birds have been controlled via netting. The vineyard was 100% netted (from prior to the fruit ripening till the day of picking), resulting in approximately $4,000 in annual labour costs.
Since the nets were 15 years old and needed to be replaced, alternatives were evaluated. Decisive advantages of the Agrilaser Autonomic are its silent functioning (in contrast to gas cannons) and relative low price (compared to netting). Installation of the Agrilaser Autonomic resulted in 80-90% bird reduction. Furthermore, grape-eating birds stopped coming
to the vineyard altogether, whereas non grape-eating birds, water birds (Ducks) and other wildlife quickly returned after the grapes had been harvested and the laser turned off. This resulted in an increased grape yield and the possibility to harvest later than normal, to create a dessert wine. There is
an expectation of future nancial gain since bird netting is very costly, both in materials and labour costs. The Agrilaser Autonomic on the other hand, works fully autonomously without the required labour to install and remove the nets annually.