I recently received an email that drew my attention to the “Seven Ways to Use Drone Mapping on the Farm This Season” article from the DroneDeploy blog. The article is a little bit older, it was originally posted back in January, however it’s a good read for drone operators interested in precision agriculture.
What is Precision Agriculture?
Precision agriculture is a new method of farming that is rapidly growing in popularity. Using what are known as “site-specific” methods, precision agriculture involves studying and managing variations within fields that can directly affect crop yield. The core concept behind precision agriculture is that you always work with the smallest unit of land possible. Understanding these units means a farmer can make intelligent decisions about the use of costly resources in the form of water, fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides.
Historically, precision agriculture was cost prohibitive because it relied upon traditional aircraft. Now drones have disrupted the industry by dramatically reducing the price point.
Just how useful of a tool are drones to today’s modern farmer?
As one ag industry expert put it, using a drone on the farm is like being able to see your field from a 10,000-foot altitude, but also being able to zoom in to two inches above the plants. Growers are increasingly discovering that drone mapping is an invaluable tool, both for its ease of use, and for its many applications on the farm.
- Crop Scout to Detect Parasites and Fungi
- Compile Plant Counts
- Analyze Stand Establishment
- Generate Variable Rate Prescriptions for Nitrogen and Pesticides
- Assess and Clean-up Damage After a Storm
- Negotiate Fair Crop Loss Percentages
- Assess Slope and Drainage After the Harvest
If you are a drone pilot who wants to break into the profitable world of drone based precision agriculture, we can help. Drone Universities offers a one day course, Drone GIS/Mapping, designed to teach you the skills you will need to excel as an agricultural drone operator.