Why Use Aerial Agriculture?
Here are some of the Facts why Aerial Ag is so much better than other methods.
Is it Accountable?
- Each spraying or topdressing job is meticulously planned to manage the risks.
- Every operator keeps comprehensive records of each application.
- Every operator and pilot is heavily regulated.
- The industry uses a AAAA standard spray order form or customised version thereof to ensure consistent information is provided from farmers to aid planning, safety and record keeping.
What about the environment?
- Licenced by the regulators, EPA NSW, Dept. Primary Industries Victoria and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority for both chemical application, flying and maintenance.
- Law we can only use only licenced and approved chemicals.
- Very detailed planning for each job that protects environmentally sensitive areas.
- Use of aerial ag ensures that applications are made by highly trained professionals, rather than ground operators who may not be licenced or trained.
- The use of aerial ag reduces the number of people involved in the application of chemicals and thereby reduces the exposure of workers to the chemicals used.
How does it benefit me?
- Air ag is unaffected by wet ground. Ground rigs are dependent on dry ground.
- Air ag is unaffected by crop canopy closure. Ground rig use after crop canopy closure is likely to lead to damage of the crop.
- Great speed to cover large areas - ground rigs would take days or even weeks to cover what it takes air ag hours.
- Reduced exposure to weather variations - able to take greater advantage of short weather windows - less likely than ground rigs to be spraying in poor conditions.
- Improved efficacy - aircraft utilise disturbance of the crop from wake turbulence to ensure good penetration of chemicals into the crop and better coverage.
- No disease transfer as the aircraft does not touch the crop.
- No soil compaction.
- No trampling of the crop like tractors, spray rigs or quads.
- No costs to irrigators of removing channels/banks/rotobucks as there is for ground rigs.
- Bring their own fuel - many ground rigs will fill-up from farmer’s tanks.
How do I know I will get a good job?
- GPS marking systems are used by almost us to give sub-meter accuracy.
- Pilots apply material guided by a 'light bar' that ensures they remain exactly on track.
- Nozzle calculators available on the internet allow pilots to predict the performance of different nozzles under different conditions.
- Software now available to assist pilots in predicting drift profile.
For more information check out the Aerial Agricultural Association of Australia website.
"Enjoy your Lunch, Thank an Ag pilot"