September 24, 2021

Pest Detection With the Notecard and a Raspberry Pi

Learn how to use a Raspberry Pi, a Notecard, and a bit of machine learning to detect common household rodents.

TJ VanToll, Principal Developer Advocate

My yard was under attack. Woodpeckers were drilling holes in my deck, something was living under (and destroying) my shed, and moles dug a series of tunnels that rival most city’s subway systems.

Picture of my yard under attack

That’s why I used a Raspberry Pi, the Notecard, and a bit of machine learning to try to catch my yard’s attackers in action. More specifically, here’s a high-level overview of what I did.

  • I put a Raspberry Pi in my yard.
  • I connected a motion detector to the Pi.
  • I connected a Pi camera to the Raspberry Pi.
  • When the detector detects motion, I take a picture with the Pi camera.
  • I analyze the photo using a machine-learning algorithm.
  • If the photo contains an animal, I store the photo and use the Notecard to send myself a notification.
  • If the photo does not contain an animal, I delete the photo.

Picture of the final setup I used

To see how I did it, check out the full writeup on Hackster , where I walk through how to set up the hardware and software that made this project possible.

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