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Concepts in Precision Agriculture and Integrated pest Management: 

Concepts in Precision Agriculture and Integrated pest Management SST Jan 24, 2003 Information compiled by: Jason Kahabka, Cornell Lance Davidson, Cornell Art Lembo, Cornell Andy Roberts, Virginia Tech


Precision Agriculture and Precision IPM Talk about maps, spatial data and GIS GPS and scouting Quick overview of remote sensing Site -specific weather modeling Case study: Look at GIS applications in IPM Outline


Precision Agriculture involves the application of data acquisition/control systems and information systems to land management and recognizes that soil, crop, and pest-related processes are variable in space and time within fields. The use of Precision Agriculture is tied to new technologies such as global positioning systems, geographical information systems, and remote sensing, and new statistical methods but it is not strictly about TECHNOLOGY! Precision Agriculture What is it?


PA Technology refers to the hardware and software that allows for the collection of information, and control of crop management tools. PA Knowledge refers to the integration of information into a set of management tools that allow for the optimum use of PA technology. PA technology and knowledge

Information Agriculture (AKA Precision Agriculture) : 

Information Agriculture (AKA Precision Agriculture) Information technologies are rapidly being developed and employed for the purpose of agricultural land management. Technologies such as global positioning systems, geographical information systems, and remote sensing, combined with field-based data acquisition/control systems allow for more informed decision making, more efficient use of inputs, and better record-keeping, thereby leading to more efficient crop production and greater environmental protection.

First, what’s a map?: 

First, what’s a map? N


Points Lines Areas Data Models: Raster vs. Vector Vector GIS is composed of points, lines, and polygons (areas). Raster GIS is composed of rasters, or cells.

Discrete vs. Continuous Surfaces: 

Discrete surfaces are not predictable. There are a finite number of locations that have data - (e.g., TAX RATES BY COUNTY) The vector model is most suited to discrete data. Continuous surfaces are somewhat predictable. There are an infinite number of locations that have unique values - (e.g., ELEVATION) The raster model is most suited to continuous data. Discrete vs. Continuous Surfaces


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UNESCO Soils: 

UNESCO Soils The Digital Soil Map of the World (version 3.0) was released in May 1994 Scale of 1:5,000,000

What’s a GIS?: 

A computer system capable of storing and using data describing places on the earth’s surface. A set of interrelated functions that achieve the Entry, Storage, Processing, Retrieval, and Generation of spatial data -or- What’s a GIS?

What questions can a GIS answer?: 

Location: “What is at ...?” Trends: “What has happened since...?” Patterns: “What spatial patterns exist?” Modeling: “What if...?” What questions can a GIS answer?

GIS Example: Mapquest.com: 

GIS Example: Mapquest.com From phone book: 421 S. Geneva St Ithaca, NY Problem: Bad Grade in IPM Solution: TP TA’s house

GIS Maps Come From…: 

Digitizing Scanning Global Positioning Systems Remotely sensed imagery GIS Maps Come From…

GIS Functions: 

GIS Functions Data Retrieval Map Generalization Map Abstraction Map Sheet Manipulation Buffer Generation Polygon Overlay Geocoding Dynamic Segmentation Network Analysis

Buffer Analysis: 

Buffer Analysis Point Circle Square Line Line Buffer Polygon Interior Exterior A type of proximity analysis where a buffer zone is created to perform a search


Overlay Overlay is an operation in which sets of geographic regions are merged to form a new set of regions that the two initial sets share

How does it work?: 

One-theme layers are combined (overlayed) to produce multiple-theme layers. New information is derived from analysis of relationships among original data. A B C 1 2 3 4 A1 B2 C3 C4 B4 C1 A2 B1 Forest type Ownership Forest/ownership combination How does it work?


+ “purple” GIS Functions: Buffer, Clip, Reselect

GPS-Global Positioning System: 

GPS-Global Positioning System The key to site specific management in the information age


The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a worldwide radio-navigation system formed from a constellation of 24 satellites and their ground stations. The basis of GPS is “triangulation” from satellites. To "triangulate," a GPS receiver measures distance using the travel time of radio signals. To measure travel time, GPS needs very accurate timing which it achieves with some tricks. The system must correct for any delays the signal experiences as it travels through the atmosphere. GPS - How the System Works


GPS signals are no longer “degraded” but there are sill sources of error Differential correction is recommended for many PA applications Correction signals can come from satellite subscription, USCG navigation towers, or from the new WAAS system, where available. Differential Correction and SA


Continuous surfaces can be derived from point data through interpolation. Values at discrete locations are point data. Interpolation

Inverse Distance Weight: 

Inverse Distance Weight The influence of an input point on an interpolated value is isotropic. Since the influence of an input point on an interpolated value is distance related, IDW is not "ridge preserving" The best results from IDW are obtained when sampling is sufficiently dense with regard to the local variation you are attempting to simulate. If the sampling of input points is sparse or very uneven, the results may not sufficiently represent the desired surface


Kriging An advanced interpolation procedure that generates an estimated surface from a scattered set of points with z values. Assumes spatial correlation among data points Kriging is based on the regionalized variable theory that assumes that the spatial variation in the phenomenon represented by the z values is statistically homogeneous throughout the surface; that is, the same pattern of variation can be observed at all locations on the surface.

Using a Semivariogram to determine an appropriate sampling grid: 

Using a Semivariogram to determine an appropriate sampling grid Variance 50 100 150 200 250 Distance (m) 150



Inverse Distance Weighting: 

Inverse Distance Weighting



An example: soil matric potential: 

An example: soil matric potential …as a covariate in analysis of soil-borne diseases

Remote Sensing: 

Remote Sensing Remote Sensing: The techniques for collecting information about an object and its surroundings from a distance without contact Components of Remote Sensing: the source, the sensor, interaction with the Earth’s surface, interaction with the atmosphere

The First Application of Remote Sensing: 

The First Application of Remote Sensing

Remote Sensing Information: 

Remote Sensing Information High-resolution* aircraft and satellite-based remote sensing information is now available at reasonable cost that is multi-spectral (hyper-spectral) digital georeferenced * fixed-wing aircraft: <1 m satellite: <5 m (< 1m with Ikonos in 2000)


Bare soil bands  PCA Vegetation bands  NDVI Aerial Image Analysis

Short-Wave Reflectance Patterns: 

Short-Wave Reflectance Patterns UV blue green red NIR ---------- visible -------- Healthy crop Dry / low OM soil Wet / high OM soil Stressed crop WAVELENGTH (nm) 1000 100 r

Sensors take multiple b&w images at discrete wavelengths: 

Sensors take multiple b&w images at discrete wavelengths Remote Sensing Spectral signatures

Principle of Reflectance: 

Principle of Reflectance

“False” Color Composites: 

“False” Color Composites B & W images from different bands are assigned colors & combined.

Vegetative Indices: 

Vegetative Indices

MRLC http://edc.usgs.gov/glis/hyper/guide/mrlc : 

MRLC http://edc.usgs.gov/glis/hyper/guide/mrlc The Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics (MRLC) project was established to provide multi-resolution landcover data of the conterminous United States from local to regional scales. Objective to develop a national 30-meter landcover characteristics data base using Landsat thematic mapper (TM) data. This is a cooperative effort among six programs within four U.S. Government agencies

Satellite Imagery for Plant Disease Detection : 

Satellite Imagery for Plant Disease Detection “Clubroot” on a cauliflower crop

Spatial Resolution for Satellites: 

Spatial Resolution for Satellites Landsat MSS: 80 meter Landsat TM: 30 meter SPOT: 10 meter IRS: 6 to 28 meter


According to today's yield monitor manufacturers, most users should obtain accuracy within +/- 3 percent, if the system is properly installed, maintained and calibrated. Items that operators must be conscious of and attend to for good results can be summarized as follows: (PPI) Proper calibration of the mass-flow sensor using multiple loads acquired according to the manufacturer's recommendations. Inspection of the system sensors, particularly those affected by crop conditions, during the harvest. Verification and, if necessary, calibration of the ground speed sensor. Verification and calibration of moisture and temperature sensors. Correct entry of the operating information such as crop type, field, and header width for each field into the system console. Proper use of the software to extract and process the yield data.


Consumers, processors, grain buyers, and trade partners are demanding more accountability from producers. STEP 1: Capture Essential Data From primary tillage practices to harvest information, John Deere GreenStar® precision farming systems let you electronically monitor and record nearly all aspects of your crop practices and field conditions. STEP 2: Validate Your Practices CropVerifeye offers a long list of field audits and services that trace the genetic integrity and identity of your agricultural products. They can also provide identity-preserved training programs. STEP 3: Manage the Information VantagePoint® Network is the perfect place to store, organize, and analyze farm data. It provides a secure method for you to provide this valuable information to trusted suppliers, contractors, and advisors. Why is This Level of Documentation Necessary? CONSUMERS WANT IT. Recent product containment issues have consumers worldwide focusing on food safety. They are beginning to demand labeling of food products - particularly from genetically modified crops. TRADE PARTNERS DEMAND IT. As countries continue their export trading, there's a huge need for an information system that can back up the quality and integrity of grain and food products with third-party verification. John Deere CropTracer TM

Penetrometer 24.5-35.0 cm Chisel Till vs. Zone Till: 

Penetrometer 24.5-35.0 cm Chisel Till vs. Zone Till Early Late Early Late Less Strength More Strength Root Limiting

Global Positioning: 

Global Positioning Determines the geographical location of the equipment (georeferencing) In IA, global positioning systems are used jointly with field data acquisition (e.g., yield measurements) or control (e.g., fertilizer/lime application) systems, or sampling equipment (e.g., soil samples, penetrometer measurements).


Using GIS to apply insecticides is possible but perhaps less cost-effective than its use with either herbicides or fungicides. Insects are much more vagile and within field distribution may vary year to year. However, certain trends in insect population distribution can be easily demonstrated using GIS. http://www.colostate.edu/Depts/IPM/tmp/gis_ag/ipmgis.html

Weather modeling: 

Weather modeling Computers also have made it possible for agricultural service companies to deliver site-specific weather information, which can help growers improve insect and disease management as well as other production practices. SkyBit, Inc., of Boalsburg, which recently introduced such a service to producers, takes raw National Weather Service data, then uses computers and information technologies to develop customized weather forecasts, which can be tailored to each farmer's needs. "Our company provides these forecasts to growers across the country," says Joseph Russo, president of SkyBit. "We can produce two-day reports that forecast the weather for a single farm on an hourly basis." By entering this information into pest development models based on weather observations, SkyBit also can forecast when insect and disease problems will develop on individual farms. "Many IPM programs use weather data to determine when crops are likely to be threatened by various insects and diseases, and when insects are most likely to be controlled successfully," Russo says. "For instance, tufted apple bud moth is susceptible to most insecticides for only a brief period after the larvae hatch. By evaluating weather conditions at the farm level, SkyBit can help growers know exactly when the larvae are most likely to appear in their orchards."


“Everything Is Related to Everything Else, but Near Things Are More Related Than Distant Things” - Waldo Tobler’s First Law of Geography

Using a Semivariogram to determine an appropriate sampling grid: 

Using a Semivariogram to determine an appropriate sampling grid Variance 50 100 150 200 250 Distance (m) 150

Depth to Basal Till : 

Depth to Basal Till deeper shallower

1999 SARE 03 pH: 

1999 SARE 03 pH Here the pH along the western edge of the field is 5.1 -5.7

Sources of information: 

Sources of information Soil survey Soil samples Aerial images Yield monitor data My work attempts to evaluate how useful each of these sources of information are in defining new management zones. Analysis is based on 3 years of data for 5 fields located in Onondaga and Seneca counties (central NY).

Soil survey: 

Soil survey Detailed soil series locations obtained from SSURGO or by digitizing Soil Survey maps.

Soil samples: 

Soil samples Soil sample data was interpolated using geostatistics (kriging or inverse distance weighting). This was done for pH, P, K, OM and NO3.

Aerial images: 

Aerial images Aerial images taken by Emerge. 2 images per season: one of bare soil (June), the other of vegetative cover (August). Images have 3 bands: green, red and near-infrared.

Coordinate systems: 

Coordinate systems Geographic space - The earth is spheroid so locations are measured in degrees. Latitude / longitude Projected space - “round” surfaces must be projected to make them display on a flat map UTM (universal transverse mercator) measured in meters

Map Datum: 

Map Datum Measurement convention or mathematical model that describes the shape of the world. GPS based on World Geodetic System 1984 (WGS 84) USGS quad maps based on North American Datum 1927 (NAD27) Future maps will be based on (NAD83) Other countries have their own datums


Projections GPS data will need to be projected before overlaying a map Projections can be a source of frustration for new users of GIS.


Projections A function or transformation which relates coordinates of points on a curved surface to coordinates of points on a plane.


UTM Angles are preserved, but distances away from the equator become progressively distorted. (for example: South America is nine times larger than Greenland. Source: http://math.rice.edu/~lanius/pres/map/mappro.html Over small areas the shapes of objects will be preserved. A line drawn with constant orientation (e.g. with respect to north) will be straight on a conformal projection (a rhumb line). Parallels and meridians cross each other at right angles (note: not all projections with this appearance are conformal). Generally, areas near margins have a larger scale than areas near the center (i.e. Greenland in Mercator projection).

The 60 UTM zones: 

The 60 UTM zones

UTM zones (cont): 

UTM zones (cont) Zones converge like lines of meridian but square grids are easier to use.

UTM zones (cont): 

UTM zones (cont) Coordinates are measured in Northing and Easting UTM uses a regular grid with a “False Easting” Center is 500,000 E

GPS Software: 

GPS Software Most have common features and a similar interface Manufacturers Garmin Trimble Magellan Many yield monitor systems have other GPS utilities that can be used for mapping

Yield monitor data: 

Yield monitor data Yield data from a combine harvester equipped with a DGPS unit and yield monitor.

Integrated analysis: 

Integrated analysis Analysis techniques: Correlations Stepwise regression PCA or Factor Analysis Spatial regression


Kriging If spatial structure is apparent then Kriging can be used to interpolate a map, assigning values to areas in between sample points.


Musgrave Farm - Aurora, NY


All Harvest Plots - Field Z


Soil Test P

An Example of GIS in IPM: 

An Example of GIS in IPM Slow the Spread (STS), initiated to manage the spread of Gypsy moth populations Example courtesy of Andy Roberts, Virginia Tech http://www.fs.fed.us/ne/morgantown/4557/gmoth/

Slow The Spread...Slow What Spread???: 

Slow The Spread...Slow What Spread???

Biological basis of STS: 

Implemented immediately ahead of the advancing front. Detect and suppress isolated gypsy moth colonies before they grow and coalesce. 0 50 KM NC VA WV VA WV Biological basis of STS

Montgomery Co.,Virginia: 

Montgomery Co.,Virginia

The Problem:: 

Where to apply? Landcover is deciduous forest. Interpolated catch is > = 1. What to apply? Bt within 100 meters of streams. Dimilin elsewhere. When to apply? Below 2500 feet elevation first. At or above 2500 feet second. The Problem:




Catch > = 1. Land cover is deciduous forest. Step One: Where is the entire treatment area?

1994 Survey sites: 

1994 Survey sites

Landcover / catch overlay:: 

Landcover / catch overlay:

Gypsy moth treatment area: 

catch >= 1 LC = forest Gypsy moth treatment area

Step Two: Where will the two treatments types be applied?: 

Bt within 100 meters of streams Dimilin elsewhere Step Two: Where will the two treatments types be applied?

Detail of streams within the treatment area: 

Detail of streams within the treatment area

Streams within treatment area: 

Streams within treatment area 100 meter buffers

Location of the the two treatment types : 

Location of the the two treatment types

Step Three: When will the treatments be applied?: 

Elevations below 2500 feet first Elevations above 2500 feet second Step Three: When will the treatments be applied?


Up close: Elevation in 500 ft contours Location of the treatment area (Notice raster & vector data)

The solution!: 

The solution! Deciduous forest Catch >= 1 Bt 100 meters from streams Low elevations first High elevations second

The solution!: 

Treatment acreages Catch Land Cover Treatment Elevation #Blocks Hectares >= 1 Forest Dimilin Low 3 220 >= 1 Forest Dimilin High 2 19 >= 1 Forest Bt Low 3 52 >= 1 Forest Bt High 1 1 The solution!

The conclusion!: 

The conclusion! Old geographers never die, they just lose their bearings... Some Courses CSS 411. Resource Inventory Methods CSS 420. Geographic Information Systems CSS 620. Spatial Modeling and Analysis CSS 465. Global Positioning Systems People in the know at Cornell Art Lembo Ann-Margaret Esnard

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