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UK: Drones Help Scots Grow Better Potatoes

UK: Drones Help Scots Grow Better Potatoes

Crop scientists at the University of Aberdeen and the James Hutton Institute believe drones can take potato breeding into the future. Resembling scaled-down stealth bombers, these remotely controlled drones are mounted with a camera and take hundreds of pictures as they fly repeated missions over tattie fields. Surveyors then collate all the images and create a three-dimensional model of the crop. This allows potato experts to accurately assess the health and development of the plants they are trialling. Until now, evaluating the success of trials was based on studying the potatoes after they were harvested. The new imaging techniques mean it is possible for researchers to study the height, density and health of the foliage, and the crop’s response to shortages of water and nutrients while the crop is growing. (Source: scotsman.com)