Flying drones targeting Burnett mice and rats tail grass
A Darling Downs based company is revolutionising the agriculture industry by spreading and spraying crops using flying drone technology as well as baiting mice and eliminating rats tail grass.
Drone Commander Australia have a fleet of seven drones that cover the Darling Downs, combating one of the worst mice plagues in recent history.
The fleet of drones have also been used to specifically target rats tail grass in the South and North Burnett regions.
Drone Commander Australia chief remote pilot Roger Woods said this drone technology is the way of the future.
"What these drones provide is air mobility for a small scale agricultural device, so the obvious advantage is we don't have to touch the crop or the surface, which avoids crop damage and compaction layers, "Mr Woods said.
"The other thing is, it's cheaper and more effective then ground based units.
"Without any doubt drones are the way of the future and will become a major agricultural tool as they continue to get bigger."
After 20 years as a Black Hawk pilot in the army, Mr Woods created the company, which now uses drone, GPS and camera technology to plant crops with extreme accuracy.
The company was founded 10 years ago and in the past three years, with the development of new technology, they have begun spraying crops as well as mice baiting.
Mr Woods said the current mice plague is one of the worst he has ever experienced.
"This current plague has been going on since last August," he said.
"We have been pretty well baiting every other day since August and what is happening is the mice move from different crop to crop as they get a taste for new crops.
"We were baiting winter crops last year, which then turned into summer and the way these mice are going, we are expecting to be baiting into winter crop in a few months time.
"The longevity of this mice plague is surprising."
Using a spreading unit with an electrical controlled spinning disk the drone is able to spread mouse bait evenly and at night.
This technique is extremely effective according to Mr Woods who said by doing the baiting at night it ensures the mice are all up and running around and also ensures birds are sleep so they don't eat the grain based bait.
Mr Woods said his company are now looking to expand into New South Wales.