Sky is the limit for Vale farmer

FLYING HIGH: The Quadcopter video camera drone takes to the air above Overbury Farm.

NEW ANGLE: Jake Freestone, manager of Overbury Farms.

First published in News by

THIS spectacular image shows a new and unique way a Vale farmer is monitoring his crops - from above.

Jake Freestone, manager of Overbury Farms, near Bredon Hill, has been getting a different view of what is in the field by using a 'Quadcopter', a drone with a video camera attached.

The drone belongs to Adam Stanford who runs Aerial Cam, a specialist archaeological and heritage photography service.

It is a useful tool for Mr Freestone as it can be used for targeted spraying of herbicides on a section of a field, monitoring sheep and even for education and social media.

"There's been a couple of us that have been interested in this Quadcopter and remote sensing for a little while now," he said. "I just got talking to Adam who is into aerial photography and he was looking for somewhere to practice. It benefitted both of us.

"I'm trying to use a different angle to view the field to have a look to see what differences we can see from the air. Things like patches of weeds within the fields, areas of compacting where the crop doesn't look as good. You can see so much more looking down on the crop.

"It's so much easier to pop up and have an overall picture and see how it's growing. We can use that information to target our impact rather than spray the whole field with herbicides we can do just a little patch. This way it's much more precise with our impact."

The project even managed to catch the imagination of Simon Mayo's Drive Time radio show on BBC Radio 2 when Mr Freestone was recently interviewed about this year's harvest.

It also featured on an item on Newsround where youngsters could see the link between the field and their breakfast cereals and toast.

Mr Freestone added: "The drone was very simple to fly, so easy Adam actually let me have a go at landing it.

"The 10-80 hd camera is fixed onto a gimble so the stability of the camera was very impressive and it's all delivered ready to fly and the images are beamed back via wifi to your telephone held on a stand on the controls.

"I would like to do it for when we're cultivating and planting crops too."

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