Tiny Trash Can Repels Trash Pandas, Medium-Sized Cats

Are you tired of cats and other wildlife relieving themselves in your outdoor plant pots? As if accidental neglect won’t kill them fast enough. [TecnoProfesor] has a solution, and it doesn’t even involve a microcontroller. It detects the presence of approaching animals and then blasts them with annoying sounds and a couple of bright green LEDs to drive them away.

Thanks to a couple of modules, the circuit is really pretty simple. There’s a PIR to detect the animals, a buzzer, and a 555-based pulse generator to play tones through the buzzer. This circuit can run 24/7 on a pair of 6V solar panels that charge up a battery. We particularly like the desk trash can enclosure, though we have to wonder how waterproof this system is. Check out the brief demo after the break.

For all of you satisfied with the 555 implementation here, your reward is this giant functioning 555. If you’re a 555 naysayer, how would you have done it better?

16 thoughts on “Tiny Trash Can Repels Trash Pandas, Medium-Sized Cats

  1. So, a solar powered alarm to keep you awake as the nocturnal creatures roam and feed?

    Have a look at videos of some of the very clever (and much quieter) water-spray systems that Australians have come up with in the face of their massive overpopulation of feral cats.

  2. Yeah, I’m thinking of bears too. Someone should develop an upsized version of this that is light enough to take backpacking to drive bears away from food at campsites.

  3. There is no way this would stop the racoons near me.
    We haven’t found anything that will stop them, that won’t ALSO stop the garbage men.

    They break, or ignore, the alarms. Making them louder only wakes the neighborhood up at 2am.
    (And I had to put them on a timer. Because the garbage men ALSO broke them or ripped them off despite the can having a warning in 5 languages)

    Chemicals don’t deter them.

    Adding latches to the lid that have to be pulled to let the top open didn’t work. Not even one night.

    Motion activated light don’t work.

    Motion activated water spray worked for exactly 1 night.
    (And only where the can’s are stored. I couldn’t exactly set that up on the curb.)

    Putting a cinder-block tied to a rope on the lid didn’t work. They figured out how to pull it off after about 2 weeks.
    (It stopped the garbage men though. They broke the cinderblock and threw the pieces in the driveway on the first week. And they just didn’t bother to even open it on the second week.)

    I modified a can with a foot pedal that slid a locking bar on the lid when stepped on. The garbage men couldn’t figure out how to open it despite the bright instructions spray-painted on the can saying “1. Step on pedal” & “2. Lift lid” in 3 languages. They left the can on it’s side in the street on the first week and didn’t touch the can at all on the second. On the third week the racoons discovered they could work together to open it. I watched one of them push the pedal down while the other one opened the lid.

    Right now we lock the cans where we keep them during the week. And then put them out on the curb with the top bag containing the recent food stuff. When we tried keeping the food in the bottom most bags the racoons either pulled the bags out and left them in the street. Or they dug through them into the bags below.

    Then, after the garbage men take away whatever is left in the bags, we shovel up all the stuff on the sidewalks into a new bag and hose the area off…

    I’ve spent EASILY over 100 work hours on this issue and have nothing to show for it other than some broken garbage cans, pissed off garbage men, and some serious respect for the learning ability of these racoons.

    NOTE: The only thing I can think of that MIGHT work is to unlock the can only when the garbage truck is there. Maybe with one of those ‘car counter’ rubber hoses run across the road that unlocks the cans for a few minutes.

    And no, computer vision is NOT the solution here. I live on a dead-end road across the street from a park where children play. And it’s against the law here to film children on public property (even at a public park) without written consent of the parents. Plus, you know, privacy. We ALREADY have way too many idiots with street facing 4k doorbell cameras that cloud saved video to shady companies that keep getting caught selling 3rd parties live access to the individual cameras, or selling access to the last X months of recordings for a whole geographic area…

  4. I think you should just get dog bowls or platters or a trough. Keep all your food waste if a new separate kitchen trash can and on trash day put the food in a dog bowls, platters, or trough. Your smart little critters will start leaving the other trash cans alone once they figure out the food is no longer in there. Just admit defeat. LoL

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