Backers say drones will prove useful for farmers

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Agricultural interest in using unmanned drones to help monitor millions of acres of crops is growing.

The Des Moines Register reports ( ) that supporters believe using drones on farms makes sense because the operations are generally large and in rural areas.

The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International predicts that 80 percent of the commercial use of drones will eventually be in agriculture.

Drones with infrared cameras and other sensors can help identify insect problems and watering issues early. They can also help assess crop yields and locate missing cattle.

Farmer Brent Johnson bought a drone last year to study how the topography of his 900-acre central Iowa farm affects yields.

He says using the drone helps him decide whether to replant an area or avoid it in the future.


Information from: The Des Moines Register,


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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