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Bird Seed-o-Meter

Know how your bird friends are doing!
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This small device includes the following equipment; A small strain gauge, a small RF transmitter, a data collection unit and a solar cell/battery.

The unit is installed either between a post and a mounted feeder or as a hanger for hanging type feeders. The unit monitors the weight of the feeder through the strain gauge. The weight information is sent via RF to the receiving unit attached to your computer.

With this data the following information can be determined;

Current amount of seed, consumption rate of seed, number and time of bird landings, amount of seed consumed per landing, estimated time to empty feeder, time and number of large animal hits etc, etc, etc.

This would allow bird enthusiats to track what is happening with their feeders, which feeders are busy etc.

These units would be small, use existing technology and many units could be integrated to one receiving unit.

jhomrighaus, Oct 22 2007

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       Name changed due to dopey trademark beef with company by previous name of this idea.
jhomrighaus, Feb 26 2008
  

       Fiddlesticks! Feed the birds and what have you got? Fat birds!
nomocrow, Feb 26 2008
  

       How would it distinguish between a quantity of birdfood and a bird which weighs the same? (And is sitting there wondering, "Where's the damn food? Does no-one re-fill this thing any more?")
angel, Feb 26 2008
  

       I'd buy it. Also a bigger version to fit underneath our refrigerator, linked to a web cam.
bhumphrys, Feb 26 2008
  

       //How would it distinguish between a quantity of birdfood and a bird which weighs the same? (And is sitting there wondering, "Where's the damn food? Does no-one re-fill this thing any more?")//   

       The unit would be able to detect landings as an increase in mass and it would be able to calculate when birds are present and when the feeder is unoccupied(i.e. at night when no birds are present it would calculate the consumption for the day) Divide this by the number of impacts of birds landing and you can tell an average feeding amount/landing It might also be possible to estimate the approximate sizes of different birds using the feeders etc.
jhomrighaus, Feb 26 2008
  

       +   

       <obligatory I made one of these when I was a kid> It was pretty simple, just a landing post on a microswitch, hooked up to an electro-mechanical(!) totalization counter device and a battery. No provision for weighing, nor duration timing. But I do recall being amazed at the number of landings in front of the seed feeder. I like your version! </oimootwiwak>
csea, Feb 26 2008
  
      
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