Whether for agriculture, photography or other purposes, how do you get the most value out a drone? What courses are available?

Story Jill Griffiths

Meg Kummerow grew up on a beef cattle property in Queensland and has worked primarily in the grains industry, but has always had an interest in technology. She bought her first drone in 2016 and now sells drones and advises people about them through her business Fly the Farm. “I realised it was easy for farmers to be sold a drone that wasn’t suitable for their purposes,” Meg says. “All the work I do is about farming and helping farmers.”

Meg is enthusiastic about the many ways drones can be helpful on farms and stations. “Farmers are using them for visual inspections and to identify where stock are,” she says. “From a cropping point of view, they can be used to identify plant health. They’re good for asset inspections, such as looking at the top of a silo or head of a windmill without needing to climb up. They’re especially good during floods when you can’t get around.”

The rules around flying drones in Australia are governed by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). What you are and aren’t allowed to do with a drone depends on how big the drone is, where you are going to fly it, and whether you are flying for commercial or recreational purposes.

This story excerpt is from Issue #134

Outback Magazine: Dec/Jan 2021