I had been told about the Contech Scarecrow by an American gardener but only having a regular British sized garden I had been put off when I saw its operating range covered over 1200 square foot. Once they became available in the UK though and people started buying them I soon discovered the range of both detection and spray was fully adjustable and so I immediately purchased one to try it out.
Setting Up The Contech Scarecrow For Best Results
As soon as you open it you see the Contech Scarecrow is everything the PestBye jet sprayer is not. It is extremely well made and feels like it will give you many years of service instead of feeling like it will barely see the year out (which my PestBye sprayer didn’t).
As I had already purchased and used The PestBye I knew how to get the Contech Scarecrow set up in just a few minutes as it is more or less the same – It is just much better made.
Once you have put it together and set it up where you want it you will need to set up the distance you want the movement sensor to operate at.
If it has any tall plants or trees and bushes in its sights you will want to lower the sensitivity knob until they are no longer in range otherwise it could be set off when they start swaying in strong winds.
You can set up the range before connecting the water – in fact I highly recommend it unless you want to risk a soaking!
As long as you have fitted the battery and the Scarecrow is switched on you will hear a click when it is activated so you can keep testing until you get the range just right.
Once the water is connected you can set off the Contech cat deterrent by waving your hand in front of the sensor to test how far the water sprays. Set the arc adjustment to ensure water is only sprayed in your own garden and not into your neighbours. Remember to allow for a strong breeze too which can take the water some way off course.
The sensor in the Scarecrow requires only one 9 volt battery and it is claimed it will give you 6 months under normal use but I found this greatly reduced until the entire local cat population learned to stop setting it off.
If your garden has a decent sized open area such as a lawn or vegetable crops then you will find the Contech Scarecrow a fantastic piece of kit. The click and movement it makes when activated actually alarms the cat enough for it to bolt and most avoid the water that follows a split second later.
Create An Army Of Scarecrows
You can also link several of the Scarecrows together to protect larger areas. You simply link as many as you need by running a hosepipe from one to the other so you don’t need a separate water supply for each Scarecrow.
It does activate if trees or plants are in its range and move in the wind but unlike cheaper options I’ve tested, the wind has to be pretty strong, a gentle swaying doesn’t seem to effect it.
It only uses around 2 cups of water per operation so this isn’t a major problem anyway, assuming your garden is large enough to ensure the water isn’t effecting your neighbours.
You will have to remember it is on though if you don’t want a soaking every time you go down the garden for a bit of dead heading or weeding!
Does the Contech Scarecrow Work?
This great piece of engineering is everything my American gardener reader said it was. Not only will it keep cats out of your garden, it works on larger animals too such as fox and deer and I know of at least one of my readers who uses the ScareCrow to protect his pond from heron and seagulls.
It is the most successful commercial cat deterrent I have reviewed so far. If you think about it, no cat is going to stand around for a soaking so it’s not surprising it is so good at it’s job – having the Scarecrow in your garden is the equivalent of standing at your bedroom window 24/7 with a cup of water ready to throw it out at the first sign of a cat in your garden.
It is one of the most expensive cat deterrents on the market but you get what you pay for and it will give many years use unlike the cheaper copies which crack and leak after the first frost.
- Expensive but you get what you pay for
- The 9v battery can run down quickly if its activated a lot
- May be overkill for very small gardens
- Not suitable for small front gardens
- Extremely robust and well made
- Range of spray is fully adjustable
- The noise and movement already has the cat running before the water actually sprays
- Covers up to 1200 sq. ft.
- Can be linked with other Scarecrows to protect larger areas
- 2 year warranty
- Cats absolutely hate the ScareCrow
- Also works on dogs, foxes, rabbits, heron etc.
The ScareCrow cat deterrent currently has around 500 reviews on Amazon.co.uk with around 70% of those who have already purchased giving it a rating of 5.
Those reviews make it the highest rated cat deterrent currently available and I’m in full agreement with them.