Ashburton Guardian Farming, Saturday, September 25, 2021

Page 14




Breakthrough remote pasture monitoring available in Canterbury I

magine being able to accurately monitor your pasture growth every day of the season with a few quick taps on your phone. No platemeter, no hours spent walking the farm, no worries about you or your staff getting it wrong, no guesswork – just precise, consistent, reliable data to help you make good decisions. It sounds too good to be true, but it’s not. This spring, thanks to worldfirst technology designed, tested and made in New Zealand, Canterbury dairy farmers have the chance to transform the way they manage pasture. The Farmote system combines latest advances in cube satellite imagery with remote sensors, micro electronics and weatherproof, cow-proof design to automatically record daily grass growth across part or all of your farm. The Farmote hardware is deceptively simple – each unit or mote comprises a hollow

plastic pole, topped by a sphere the size of a tennis ball, mounted year-round in the paddock. The pole is full of solarpowered electronics and batteries; the sphere contains optical sensors used in smartphone cameras; and the prongs securing the mote to the ground include soil moisture and temperature sensors. What makes the Farmote system unique – apart from being permanently installed on-farm – is the way it automatically integrates data collected from the paddock with aerial imagery captured by low Earth orbit cube satellites. The result is real-time, objective daily pasture measurement, in all conditions. Sixty Farmotes have been tested on Canterbury dairy farms over the past three years; testing has also been done in Manawatu and Waikato. Now the Christchurch startup which pioneered the system is launching it on subscription to local farmers.

Richard Barton (left), with Luis Canobra - world-first pasture measurement technology available in Canterbury this spring. PHOTOS: SUPPLIED

Keep an eye out for improved pastures.

es forAchieve faster growth rates for your lambs this season. Quality aglime comes down to particle size and moisture content. Talk to us today about how our lime can make a difference on your farm.

0800 303 980 • d growth Apply this spring. quality aglime for greater grass recovery and growth this spring.

0800 303 980 •

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