Holland start-ups train crows to collect cigarette butts

Azfamily.com, a Crowded Cities start-up in Holland, designed a trash can to train crows to throw away cigarette butts to get rewards. The trash can is called Crowbar, and a raven puts a cigarette end in this trash can to get a peanut.

Cigarette butts are the most scattered objects on the earth, and more than 4 trillion and 500 billion cigarette butts are thrown away every year. According to the American non smoker’s right (no-smoke.org), about 1 billion 690 million pounds of cigarette butts eventually become garbage every year. Millions of dollars are used to clean up this rubbish.

Cigarette butts are biodegradable. It takes 10 years to decompose. They also have high carcinogenicity, which is a flaw in the design of Crowbar.

Birds have a very sensitive respiratory system, which may be affected by second-hand smoke, especially burning cigarettes. Cigarette residues may also fall on bird feathers, causing birds to fall ill, leading to feather shedding, coma and cardiac arrest.

Many people think that crows are absolute geniuses. They can remember faces, observe patterns, and are called professional problem solvers. The idea of Crowbar is very promising, especially for bird friends who need treatment.

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