Just had to share this interesting article with you all today. Jim and Betty Meyer, inventor and owners of Nite Guard, were recently interviewed in Mesa, AZ by Joan Wells who was doing feature articles on the entrepreneurial spirit being alive and well in Mesa...and the interesting inventors that are showcasing their inventions at the Mesa Market Place. Enjoy!
Necessity is the mother of invention.
Entrepreneurs Jim and Betty Meyer started out forty years ago owning and operating a commercial pheasant raising business in Minnesota. Little did they know, but necessity became the mother of their invention: the Nite Guard Solar® system.
Although they thought they were in the bird raising business, it turns out they were also in the predator-deterrent business as well.
Growing birds required 10 hours of care during the day and 14 hours of guarding them during the night.
No one can run an operation 24 hours a day without assistance. Jim and Betty remember countless times that they were awakened by their birds being attacked by weasels, raccoons, coyotes and every feral dog and cat in the neighboring area.
“It is difficult to stay sane without sleep. You can’t guard the birds all night and the traditional ways of controlling predators including traps, guard dogs, snares and ambush just didn’t do it”, says Jim Meyer.
The losses continued for years. They were predictable, costly and as state and federal laws changed, often times were unlawful. Owls, for example,became and still are, federally protected. Yet they are lethal killers of poultry, waterfowl and small pets.
As night animals continued to compete with Meyer for his birds, they were also multiplying at alarming rates while the methods to control them became more difficult through regulation. It was clear the problem of animal predator kills was on the rise and was costing him thousands of dollars in damages annually within his game bird business.
“Desperate to find a solution, I began to experiment with different forms of light. I knew, from experience, night predators would shrink away from light, and although they feared being discovered, they would quickly adapt to and enter into areas that were constantly lit.”
“I spent countless hours musing over a solution that might solve this serious problem”. “It would take a device that not only repelled night animals, but would be energy efficient, weatherproof and also affordable to build”.
Meyer spent nearly five years studying predators and testing prototypes. He finally discovered the key. He knew that managing what the predators saw, or what their instincts believed they had seen was the key, and that key was a flash of light.
Through many years of animal behavior testing, Meyer determined that unexpected flashes of light were perceived to be the “eye” of another organism, either another animal or man. This presented a threat to a night animal and because of their strong sense of self preservation, they would flee that area.
The current product he has manufactured for sale is the result of many modifications to his prototypes. It is solar powered and emits a flash of red spectrum light implying to animals that hunt or feed at night that they are being watched or have just been discovered.
“Happily, Betty and I learned that this is their deepest fear and causes them to avoid that area”, we finally got some sleep at night”. Says Jim Meyer.
“The solution to driving predators away from my birds was elegantly simple and provides the same solution for livestock producers, fruit growers and crop farmers. Their predators are crop thieves and livestock killers and they too have the same aversion to being “seen” at night.
The benefits of using Jim and Betty Meyer’s invention are that the predators no longer have to be destroyed and finding food will not be as easy as the hen house or garden. As a result, these animals tend to reproduce in smaller numbers as that reduces competition within their species.
“Environmentalists love our energy efficient Nite Guard Solar® as it uses the sun and daylight to power itself. Nite Guard Solar® will protect gardens, bird feeders, nesting areas and conservation areas from predators” says Jim Meyer.
Nite Guard Solar® also protects poultry and livestock from coyote, fox, bear, mountain lion, wolf, bobcats, owls, mink, weasel and skunks.
It protects flower and vegetable gardens, orchards and vineyards from deer and raccoon. It protects bird feeders, purple martin houses and fish ponds. Nite Guard Solar® protects campsites and cabins as well from bear, raccoon and mountain lion.
The interesting thing is that Nite Guard Solar® also discourages human intruders. These crisply flashing red lights imply that surveillance and security protocols are in place and gives an intruder something to think about. Says Jim Meyer, “you don’t have to have the best security system in place to keep intruders away, it just needs to be better than what is commonplace in your neighborhood!”
- Joan Wells