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Posted Jul 13, 2020 by amber

Drone Technology: Working with Ag Professionals, Not Against Them

Although some ag professionals may harbour the fear that drones will eliminate their necessity and leave them out of work, this is not the case at all.

Drones can be a powerful tool in any ag professional’s arsenal that will not only makes their lives easier but will also help them achieve substantial advantages, ultimately enabling them to perform better in their role.

Here are five key benefits that ag professionals can incur by implementing drones into their precision agriculture operation:

1) Time Saving

Drone flights cover approximately 150 hectares in 90 minutes and generate precise, georeferenced advanced data reports which indicate exact problem areas on fields requiring further ground truthing.

This enables ag professionals to precisely determine what is happening on every inch of their field, far quicker compared to traditional “on-foot” scouting methods which tend to be laborious, time consuming and resource intensive.

This results in fast, precise, data driven responses and increased operational efficiency. For example, RocketFarm’s advanced crop monitoring solution enables ag professionals to holistically monitor the growth of crops, identify issues speedily and precisely and better target scouting efforts.

2) Improved Productivity

Besides offering tremendous time-saving benefits, drones also help ag professionals improve productivity by pinpointing the exact numbers, percentages, and geo-locations of problematic and healthy areas.

For example, RocketFarm’s advanced weed analysis report helps ag professionals to speedily and accurately spot weed-infested crops before yield goals are affected.

This allows ag professionals to optimise weed control measures by applying the right amount of herbicide on the right spots, helping to reduce waste and save time and money.

3) Enhanced Crop Health

Traditional scouting methods often entails investigating only a small area which rarely depicts what is actually happening across the entire field.

Consequently, this prohibits ag professionals from identifying problems and correcting the spread of disease in a timely manner, causing substantial yield losses and diminished profits.

Alternatively, the use of drones proactively assists ag professionals to quickly spot weed and pest infested areas and optimise treatment measures, enhancing crop health and maximising potential yields.

For example, RocketFarm collects drone data throughout the growing season at critical growth stages which allows ag professionals to improve planning and predictions; resulting in teams being able to better anticipate the quality of harvests and the final yield.

Moreover, drones can be used to generate valuable data that helps ag professionals better understand plant emergence, plant population and plant spacing metrics.

This information can therefore be used to enhance decision-making concerning replanting, pruning, and thinning activities to enhance the overall health and performance of crops.

4) Improved Accountability

The use of drones offers ag professionals a secure way to accurately assess any damage or risk that may have occurred in-field.

For example, RocketFarm’s high-resolution, on demand drone data encompasses the ideal tool to capture, evaluate and precisely report on events which have caused economic loss such as crop destruction, injury and reduced health.

Additionally, when conducting field trials, drones deliver precise data on trial results allowing ag professionals to easily identify which programs worked best based on comparing and tracking the results of multiple trials over time.

For example, RocketFarm helps ag professionals determine with great accuracy which trials were successful and which were failures, providing actionable insights into which programs should be implemented based on historic facts and evidence.

5) Enhanced Progress Tracking

Ongoing, drone data allows ag professionals to effectively track in-field progress by overlaying drone maps from different time periods to identify similarities and differences as well as compare and measure crop success over time.

This data is particularly useful when it comes to verifying the effectiveness of measures and visually tracking changes in field progress. This allows ag professionals to develop the best possible methods required to improve the next generation and increase the quality and production of crops.

The Final Word

Drones help ag professionals with some of their most pressing problems when it comes to saving time, improving the productivity of their operation, enhancing crop performance, improving accountability, and advancing the tracking process.

Ultimately, the use of drones works in partnership with ag professionals not against them, adding tremendous value to their daily tasks and growing operation. Therefore, don’t waste a minute worrying about whether drones will take away your job. Take the chance to enhance your career and productivity today.

Contact RocketFarm

If you are looking to incorporate drones into your operation, contact RocketFarm today! Our Business Development Manager – Zander Van Pletzen is available on +27 73 024 1755 or zander@rocketfarm.aero and is more than willing to answer any questions you may have. Alternatively, feel free to visit our website at www.rocketfarm.co.za.

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