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EARTHCHAT: Landcare, drones, and local climate action

Updated: Jun 20, 2022

On this week's episode of EarthChat, Jacqui Fulton, president of the Sunday Creek Dry Creek Landcare Group, joins Peter Lockyer to discuss an exciting and efficient initiative to eradicate weeds through drones.

And Nagambie farmer Jim Winter-Irving also joins the show to talk about climate action in agriculture, the value of community groups in being custodians of the land, and the optimism in this space generated by the change in the federal government. We’ll

talk about the nitty gritty of the Farmers for Climate Action “climate-smart agriculture toolkit".

Volunteers in Landcare groups invariably spend a lot of time eradicating invasive and noxious weeds, amongst other things. For black berries on rough terrain, this is a very difficult task:

- Surveying the extent of the problem

- Planning suitable spray or other, control mechanisms

- Training and safety of volunteers.

Enter drones and some clever technology not just limited to weed control - drones have

many applications to support landholders.

Thanks to the generous donation by C.R. Kennedy (Consumer Division), South West

Goulburn Landcare Network now has a drone to be utilised by the Landcare units.

C.R. Kennedy are specialists in geospatial equipment, including drones and cameras.

How do you spray weeds with a drone? Well, a donated MG-1P drone has a 10-litre liquid

capacity that can spray weeds in those hard to get to places like gullies overtaken with


It is not only landholders and Landcare members that are going to benefit from this

generous initiative. Local students undertaking the VET Drone Certificate will be able to

gain hands-on experience of using this Ag drone out in the field in a real work situation. It is

also a service stream within the agriculture industry that students can aim towards, with

real prospects of employment locally and further afield. Drones will play a big part in the

future of modern agricultural technological advancement.

Field Master Systems will initially assist with operating and mentoring students and

Landcare members to use the drone and to become proficient in using the equipment as

well as support to obtain their CASA licence.

Sonia Sharkey, the Landcare Facilitator along with several members of the SWGLN

committee were there to take delivery of the drone from C.R. Kennedy staff Jeff Bethell;

National Product & Marketing Manager, Chang Chuol; Drone Operator and John Davison from Field Master Systems.

EarthChat on 103.9 Seymour FM this Friday at 10am, and repeated at 8am on Saturday. A

thoughtful way to end the week.

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