The wonderful people at Skycam UAV who build and supply our UAVs have been surveying a local farm.

Grass Grubs are the larvae of the bronze beetle Eucolaspsis brunnea, and eat the roots of pasture grasses, causing significant damage and thus loss of productivity on New Zealand farms.  Since the damage can be seen by the naked eye, it was suggested that the Fox UAV could be used to assess the extent of infestation of the farm and thus help in planning eradication measures.

The Skycam team visited the farm and flew their Fox over the affected areas and collected a large number of photographs.  Coincidentally, Skycam UAV was approached by Simactive, a company providing photogrammetry software, offering to process a set of images as a demonstration of their product's capability.

Skycam sent a sub-set of the images (50) to Simactive, who processed them into an orthomosaic.  The result is shown below

Even to the untrained eye, it is obvious that the grass is severely damaged in this paddock and would provide little feed for sheep or cattle set to graze on it.

Since the images are georeferenced, the farmer can use the mosaic to plan treatment of the affected areas, though it is apparently difficult to treat established pasture 


This is another example of the non-military use of UAVs and the way our research may benefit New Zealand.
Thanks to Skycam UAV for providing the images and to Simactive for producing the orthomosaic.