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Startup: crows to pick cigarette butts in Sweden

Startup crows to pick cigarette butts in Sweden

Ground Report | New Delhi: Crows to pick Cigarette butts in Sweden; Swedish startup is training wild crows to pick up cigarette butts and other small debris. His method will soon be tested in the Swedish city of Södertälje, 30 kilometres from Stockholm.

Crows can learn step by step. The idea is that the birds manage to collect the garbage and place it in a food vending machine. “These are wild birds that would willingly participate,” explains Christian Günther-Hanssen, founder of the Corvid Cleaning Company.

The company has opted for ravens because they are the most intelligent birds. “They are easier to teach and there is a greater chance that they will learn from each other. At the same time, there is less risk of them eating the garbage by mistake,” explains the founder to the Swedish edition of The Local.

Wild crows are enjoying picking up the garbage from the streets. while the corvids are one of among animal creatures who are capable of using tools, nursing grudges, and even holding funerals.

Christian Gunther-Hanssen, the company’s founder, told The Guardian that these crows might reduce the city’s cigarette butt cleaning expense by 75%. ‘They are wild birds taking part on a voluntary basis,’ Gunther-Hanssen said.

As stated by, the Keep Sweden Tidy Foundation, more than one billion cigarette butts are disposed of in Swedish streets. Sodertalje invests 20 million Swedish kronor (over Rs 16.21 crore) for cleaning the streets.

The training procedure starts by attracting wild crows to the machine with a piece of food. After this progression rehashes a couple of times, the food is moved inside the gadget and isn’t made accessible to the crow until the second it lands. The creature presently realizes that the machine can give it food in light of its activities.

At one point, the Crowbar quits delivering the food naturally. The main way for the crow to get taken care of is by pushing the cigarette interrupting the repository. Assuming it’s ready to sort this progression out, the thought is that it will begin scouring for cigarettes somewhere else as an instalment for its feast.

The effectiveness of this pilot, according to Tomas Thernstrom, a waste strategist for the municipality of Sodertalje, is depended on funding. He stated that it would be fascinating to explore whether this might be used in other situations. ‘Also, from the perspective that we can teach crows to pick up cigarette butts but we cannot teach people not to throw them on the ground. That is an interesting thought,’ he noted, as per The Guardian report.

The person in charge of training these birds built a box of two parts. In one he placed the food and in the other, he left it empty to throw the garbage. Through a mechanism, every time a butt was dropped, a nugget of food was delivered. The ravens quickly understood the mechanism and also became one more attraction in the park.

If the pilot project works in the municipality of Södertälje, it could become a solution to waste left on public roads and spread to the rest of the country.

“It would be interesting to see if this can work in other places, given that we can teach crows to pick up butts, but we can’t teach people not to throw them away,” said Tomas Thernström of Södertälje’s garbage collection service.

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