Now here is
a somewhat novel use of technology...the solar powered bird feeder!
After doing a few online searches and reading about what is offered,
I've determined that they are not as hokey as they sound.
There are a number of different styles and types of feeders.
What I expected to find was a bird feeder with a solar panel,
batteries and LED lights for illuminating the seed goods in the
evening. And, there are plenty of those type available.
They come as light houses, lanterns, angels and any number of other
traditional & decorative designs. Besides providing some
battery fed illumination, they are mostly like any other. I
really am not aware of any winged animals (other than bats) that
feed at night so, I believe these are useful mostly as decorative
What I hadn't anticipated were
those solar powered bird feeders with squirrel deterrent!
Basically these type utilize the stored solar energy to direct a
mild static electric shock to offending squirrels. It is
pretty funny to watch the rodents freak out when they receive the
jolt. (Especially if you have ever dealt with them stealing all of
your bird food!) Here is a link where you can see a small
video from a popular maker, of yard rats getting juiced -
Powered Bird Feeder w/ Squirrel Shock. The current doesn't
effect the perched birds because their little feet don't complete
the circuit like a fat, bird seed fed, squirrel does. I think
these types of devices are pretty cool considering the multitude of
different methods and designs manufacturers have developed over the
years to keep intruders out of bird feed. As the site above
shows, they also look quite effective!
Here is a link to a news story about
solar feeders made in NC.