Photo: Kyodo / Reuters
No, this is not a Halloween decoration someone forgot. This robot — “Monster Wolf” — is actually a bear deterrent. The city of Takikawa, Japan, deployed these robowolves to prevent bear attacks.
And yes, bear attacks were something of a problem: 157 people were attacked by bears in 2019. But since the Monster Wolves were installed, no attacks have occurred, The Guardian reports.
Black bears’ recent attacks are probably due to a shortage of acorns in the Japanese wilderness, according to conservationists. Bears rely on acorns as part of their pre-hibernation diet, and without the high-calorie nut, they’ve started edging closer to cities to forage for food. Deforestation and growing cities have shrunk the barrier between bear and human…tech, The Verge