I got an upset call from my daughter the other day. She was disturbed by the presence of a drone that was flying above her house. I’m not sure what was so unsettling about it, but she investigated her rights as a homeowner and learned that the air above her home did, in fact, belong to her. She fantasized about shooting it down (she doesn’t own a firearm), or sending up her own drone to disable the offender (she doesn’t own a drone either). I suspect this is about privacy and the invasion of her space. She’s quite sensitive to noise so I think that’s what first set her off. When I think of drones I think about war and the Middle East. Do drones have positive purposes around the globe? I think they do!

I came upon a post about how drones are improving cultivation of tea plants.

Dr. Manzul Kumar Hazarika concluded that drones represent an excellent surveillance option this is quite cost-effective.

“The main benefits of the drones are data acquisition at a very high spatial resolution at high accuracy, easy and quick to deploy on demand, no obstructions from clouds unlike earth-observation satellites……drones can add to the much needed speedy surveillance of the tea gardens for pest as well as insect attacks to take actions at the initial stage in order to reduce the reaction time and decrease in pesticide and insecticide volume.”

As more tea gardens are pursuing organic options, I see drone surveillance as a significant aid in avoiding the use of widespread pesticides. Early detection of infestation would be critical in that environment. Dr. Hazarika further said:

“Use of multi-spectral sensors, drones can also create images showing the situation of tea plants in terms of output as well as their maturity levels. Using very high-resolution cameras and maps generated by drones will be helpful in planning and making decisions for plantings.”

Do drones have a role to play in the future of agriculture? I think the answer is: Absolutely. Using drones for positive purposes brings this interesting technology into focus around the world. We will become increasingly challenged by climate change, so any opportunity to get a leg up on agricultural pests will allow tea farmers to support organic farming practices more effectively.

Photo “Flying quadcopter drone agriculture farming” is copyright under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike Generic License 2.0 to the photographer “ackab1” and is being posted unaltered (source)