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Despite the recent emphasis in Africa by national and regional plant protection organizations to control pest birds, traditional farmers usually are still left to their own initiative, as they have been for centuries, to protect their crops. These farmers employ many ingenious visual and oratory frightening techniques, barriers, agronomic planting or harvesting modifications, and bird population-suppression methods. Under some circumstances these methods can reduce damage. However, their effectiveness is subject to such variables as the season of the year, the type and maturation stage of the crop, the pest species and its abundance, the size and ownership of the field, and the diligence and enthusiasm of the bird scarers. The inability of farmers to consistently and successfully protect their crops from birds encourages feelings of frustration, and often leads to their abandoning farming. Clearly practical, economical, and applicable solutions are needed by traditional farmers if future food production goals are going to be met. Research and extension can provide these solutions.