A Look at UAVs in Agriculture

From the advancements in animal well-being, the milestones made in biotechnology, and technological developments in precision agriculture and precision animal management, agriculture is a continuously evolving industry. One of the newest popular technologies starting to be used by farmers is called an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), also known as a “drone.” These small aircrafts are remotely controlled and have many possibilities and potential benefits for farmers around the world. Brian Luck, assistant professor in Biological Systems Engineering at UW-Madison and a UW-Extension machinery and precision agriculture specialist, has been working on solving issues related to precision agriculture. During a presentation about assistive technology, Luck described prospective uses of UAVs for farmers with injuries or limitations. For instance, UAVs may provide farmers who cannot easily move around their farms with the capability of checking field crops or animals in the pasture. This would decrease the need to travel through acres of uneven ...
August 18, 2015
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Farming with Arthritis

The typical day for a farmer starts with chores, which usually include bending and kneeling to milk cows, lifting and twisting to feed animals, climbing in and out of tractors, and cleaning the barn. Though it may be enjoyable to spend time taking care of the animals and spending the day in the fields, doing these chores can provoke pain from arthritis, chronic inflammation of the joints, making it more difficult to complete them. Luckily for Wisconsin farmers, Wisconsin is home to the Arthritis Foundation and many resources to aid farmers facing the challenges associated with arthritis and farm work. Jessica Graser, Arthritis Foundation’s Program and Event Coordinator, stated the astounding fact that over 1 million people in Wisconsin suffer from arthritis. Another astonishing fact is there are more than 100 identified types of arthritis, and although research is trying to narrow down the cause of each type, there are no ...
August 2, 2015
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Social Wellness and Farmers

Many people perceive farming as a sunny day spent holding kittens and driving the tractor through the beautiful fields of the countryside. Pictures show and stories tell us about the good things that farmers want to share. It comes as a shock to some to realize that whistling along during a bliss-filled day’s work on the tractor isn’t the typical day on the farm. It’s tough out there in the country. Getting soaked from the rain, boots filling to the rim with manure, spending the majority, if not all, of the night with a new calf or foal, and worrying every day about the farm as a business to support the family are the real sounds and snapshots of farming. Living and making a living out in the country isn’t what most folks think. A farm is a business. And if there is too much rain, or the herd gets ...
July 1, 2015
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