Getting Started With Precision Agriculture

Kurt LawtonGeneral

An excellent presentation on precision agriculture and the tools that add greater farm efficiency was compiled by Alabama Extension and Auburn University experts and presented at the North Alabama Production meetings.

It shows the history, the rate of adoption of many precision farming technologies, current trends, savings rates of key technologies, guidance systems and GPS satellite correction signals, swath control, variable rate application and much more. Here are a few key points:

  • 54% of growers have adopted one or more precision technologies
  • One hot trend is high-level GPS accuracy using RTK and auto steer for strip-till, fertilizing and planting
  • Auto-swath input savings can equal from 2 to 10% per pass across the field, with a payback of less than two years
  • Use data mapping to address field variability so your profit map reflects a positive return
  • Develop short-term and long-term precision agriculture implementation plans to help with purchasing decisions

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