How to create a Wireless RF circuit activated by an ultrasonic sensor for interesting project?

Hi all,

Please help, I want to use 2 Arduinos with a 433MHz RF wireless transmitter/receiver module which will sense when a bird is on a perch. Basically I have a bird that visits my garden everyday and likes me to feed him, he arrives on a perch in my garden at various points throughout the day and if I'm not looking out the window i wont know he is there. I want to make a project where I can have an ultrasonic sensor (or any other better detection sensor detect the bird when it is on it's perch which will then send a signal to an LED and buzzer which will alert me that he is there so I can feed him!

I have watched lots of online Youtube tutorials on using a 433MHz RF wireless transmitter/receiver module but none of them in this type of set up, I'm fairly new to Arduino but have played around with it a lot with basic circuits. I know I will need probably need to download the radiohead library, but i don't really know how to set this up and code it, can anybody help or direct me to a online video or YT video for help?

Thank you in advance

Just set up separate sketches, one for ultrasonic detection that you think might detect a bird. Another one to transmit a message. Troubleshoot both and then combine them in one sketch with this logic:

repeat {
check US
if (US bird criteria met) {
  send 433MHz message

If you have trouble combining the sketches, post them here.

Both the RadioHead library and the Ultrasonic library have documentation and example sketches to get you started.

Do yourself a big favour and learn to work without depending on YT etc. for help. The average quality of information on there is very poor.

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It may be that the sensor will detect any movement say from surrounding plant or animal life.
I'd be sorting that out first up.

Another avenue is to use ML and a ESP32-CAM to actually detect its a bird.

ESP32-CAM: Machine Vision Tips, Camera Guides and Projects.

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Thank you for your input.
The bird perches up high on a plastic bracket that sticks out from the wall, so it should be fine if the ultrasonic detectors are set to a short range pointing away from the wall, if that doesn't work I could always design it to activate another way using a different sensor, I just want to have the basic circuit outline first so that I can then prototype it and swap out sensors, alarm buzzers etc.

Thanks, yes I know there is a lot of bad info on YouTube although there can be a good nugget of info on there sometimes, but it is very time consuming to try and find it. I have watched many videos by Paul McWhorter which have been helpful, but thought I would explore the forums for additional guidance.
I will download the libraries of both and have a look to see whether I can make sense of them and experiment. Thanks

Thanks, yes if the first type of set up works well I may look to upgrade to a system using something like the ESP32-CAM is it looks and sounds very interesting👍

Basic modulated IR beam might be easiest.....dont know why you think it necessary to go to more powerful ATtiny 85 would be heaps with the light beam...even one of the small Arduino PIR sensor modules would suffice.

What don't use an Arduino? I wouldn't know how to wire up a single microcontroller, my electronics skills are only basic, that's why the Arduino is a good platform for people like me. Thanks again.

There will be wiring between the Arduino and any sensors you use. It'll have to be weatherproofed too.

Yes, I will be using waterproof materials and designing it in Fusion 360 when I know what components I will be using, so I can design and build an enclosure around all the parts. Have just ordered some IR sensor modules and a couple of Arduino Nanos as well as some 433MHz RF wireless transmitter/receiver modules, which I will play around with tomorrow and see if I can learn how to code it all together using the libraries for reference. Not great with coding, so I may be pulling my hair out lol!

Typically, that produces results. It's "I can't get my head around..." that never goes anywhere. :slight_smile:

No different to Arduino, comes on a small modular board with solderpins.
Quick search shows any programming settings on the Arduino IDE.
Whatever floats your boat I guess.
If micros are so difficult for you, just use a low voltage version PIR relay off Ebay or similar.

Use that fact to make your bird sensor. Make a switch that closes when the bird lands on the plastic bracket. Switch open = no bird. Switch closed = bird.

Thanks for the suggestions, yes that may work although I really want to get a lot more into Arduino, so having done the usual beginner projects, this is the first of my own ideas I have come up with so I think it would be a good learning experience for me to see what works and what doesn't with a bit of trial and error. hopefully I can learn a thing or two from my failures and hopefully get some successes :crossed_fingers:

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I dip in and out of Arduino so what I learn one month I forget the next, I have too many interests, I am determined to make success of this project though😁

Thanks, yes I did think of that idea, but it is a tiny robin and they weigh very little so not sure if the sensor switch would sense the birds weight and where it landed on the perch. The bird is also used to the perch, so if I change the surface that it lands on it may not want to land on it again, who knows? I am going to try the IR sensors first as they sound fun to play with and would be good to learn anyway for using in other projects and then if that doesn't work, I will try and design a super sensitive switch system :+1:

That is a great plan.

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A AMG8833 IR Thermal Camera is an option. Aim it at the area the bird likes to perch on. The bird lands, the temperature of the area goes up, the AMG8833 detects the bird and sound the alarm.

Later on with 8X8 pixels to work from the AMG8833 even basic ML can be used to detect bird..

Sounds great and I just checked out that sensor, might be a bit overkill for this simple project and will break my bank balance, but loving the suggestions as it makes me think of what other projects I can do down the line :smiley: