Why use drones for agricultural purposes?
Our drone camera captures Red, Green and Blue light and then apply a VARI algorithm to assess plant health. VARI stands for Vegetation Adjusted Reflectance Index and measures the reflectance of vegetation versus soil. We can use our drone and the VARI index to assess things like wind damage and detect certain crop diseases (for example rust fungus). Using this technology along with our drone is allowing us to easily crop scout hundreds of acres and get actionable data in a matter of minutes. With this information, as well as performing some ground-truthing, changes can be made in how your faming is done and potentially save thousands of dollars.
Estimating plant counts using conventional methods is a time-consuming, manual process, and since only sample areas are counted, it doesnʼt give you a complete view of your plant or stand count. Using the data that we collect using our drone, we can automate the process and provide more complete, accurate data of plant counts. We can analyze stand count in emergent corn and soy, as well as counting visibly distinct plants like trees in an orchard or tomato plantings in a field.
We can generate topographic maps which can assist in making changes in variable rate fertilization. When it rains, fertilizer/pesticides etc flow downhill with the water, so more is needed higher up, and less downhill. Our topographic maps can also assist with tiling decisions by measuring where to draw away excess moisture in the soil. The elevation data reflects height in feet or meters relative to point at which the drone took off.
For livestock operations, our drone can be used to monitor the location, status and movement of animals over time with more frequency and at a lower cost than other means.
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