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Customer Case Study

Farmacist

Queensland

A notification to your smart phone could save you thousands of dollars in electricity, water and labour costs

 

Objective
Irrigation Management System to save labour and farm costs while increasing farm efficiency.

Details
Farmacist is an agronomic solutions provider based in Mackay and Burdekin, North Queensland. 

Using low-cost, soil-moisture probes fitted with Taggle transmitters, Farmacist is helping local farmers to minimise their use of irrigation water, by alerting them when water has reached the end of furrows. In addition to saving water, this initiative is reducing labour costs and ensuring that fertilizer and pesticides remain on-farm and don’t reach waterways and the Barrier Reef.

Method
Farmacist has set up a base station network around the Burdekin area for farmers to utilise.

The sensors are placed in the tail drains or furrows; they activate when the water reaches the end of the row, sending a notification to the Farmacist App. This alerts the farmer in a timely manner to turn off the water, without physically having to visit the field. 

Sensors include;
Taggle-equipped soil-moisture sensors

Results
Labour – The sensor significantly reduces the amount of time spent running around the farm, checking on fields.  You can spend more time doing other things on the farm, leading to better overall efficiencies.

Water costs – By turning off pumps or changing sets in a timely manner, you can save a significant amount of water across every set, within a block.  Multiply these savings across all of your blocks and every irrigation event throughout the year and the water savings become significant.

Electricity costs  You can plan to let your sets run during the night and take advantage of cheaper tariff rates.

Farm inputs (Chemical and Nutrient) – Keeping fertiliser and chemical inputs on-farm is the key to maximising production, input efficiency, profitability and input costs. It also reduces pollution to waterways and the Barrier Reef, looking after the environment.

Capital costs – There is no upfront costs for expensive wifi telemetry across the farm.  You can tap straight into the base-station network created for the Burdekin already.  This network is serviced and maintained by local professionals.

Recycle pits – You can place the sensor 80% up the wall of your recycle pit. When the pit is 80% full, it will send you an alarm, letting you know that you the water has reached this predetermined height and now you can start pumping out.

Cylinders – You can place them on top of your cylinders, and if it overflows, you will know about it straight away!

Record keeping – Every time the sensor changes state, it records a time, date and GPS location.  You can set up the sensors towards the fluming end of the paddock.  Once the pump starts, it records wet, once you turn off the pump, the connection reads dry.  You now have automatic irrigation record keeping.