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TIA Irrigation Program | May News

Welcome to the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture’s Irrigation Program May newsletter.

This edition highlights the resources from our recent Water for Profit State-Wide Event. We had a fantastic turnout with more than 100 agricultural producers and industry members joining us to hear the latest research on autonomous irrigation systems, precision technology and best-practice tips for using drones in irrigation. 

We hope you enjoy this edition. Please let us know if there are any specific topics or questions you would like to have answered in future editions by emailing: phoebe.bobbi@utas.edu.au


Water for Profit Videos

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Dr Will Bignell: The Drone Revolution

The media is full of stories and adverts about drones revolutionising agriculture, but is that revolution actually taking place?

After flying drones over thousands of hectares Will has learnt there is a big divide between reality and market spin. Watch Will's presentation here.

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Dr James Hills: Smarter Irrigation

Dr Hills shares the latest results from the Smarter Irrigation for Profit project, which is using sensor technology to collect data on water use, energy use and pasture production from five sites across Tasmania. Watch James' presentation here.

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Dr Alison McCarthy: Autonomous Systems

Alison McCarthy gives an insight into NCEA's projects on variable-rate irrigation for improved irrigation precision, machine vision sensing for mapping pasture variability across paddocks and fields, and automated site-specific irrigation mapping. Watch Alison's presentation here.


Water for Profit Online Resources

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CropARM is a simple software tool that indicates possible outputs to critical management decisions. It is freely available online and for the first time contains Tasmanian specific-data sets. The tool can be used to compare how different crops, pastures and irrigation scheduling perform with local soils and conditions. Get the facts here.

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Soil and Water Management

At our State-Wide event Dr Bill Cotching and Mr John McPhee from TIA ran a session to provide growers with key tips to manage their soil and water under irrigation. Read some of their directions towards better soil management.

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Issue irrigators have with centre pivots

At our State-Wide event Dr Joseph Foley from the University of Southern Queensland and Mr David McLaren from TIA facilitated a workshop on the issues that irrigators are having with centre pivots. A common problem that came up from the discussions was pivot wheel rut issues. Read the suggested solutions here.


TIA Irrigation Research Update

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Significant savings using variable rate irrigation

New research from TIA has found that using variable rate irrigation (VRI) could reduce water use by as much as 30 per cent, creating significant savings for farmers. Read more.

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Research to support Tasmania’s green pea industry

Researchers at TIA are developing a system that will help growers to better predict yield and increases in green pea production in the State. Read more.

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Maximising investment in irrigation

In late March, the Water for Profit farmer groups combined for a workshop and farm tour at Richard Gardner’s “Annandale” property at Tunbridge. Read more.

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