Tuesday 7 August 2018

Rain gauges – why they're a powerful tool for your operation

Do you know how much rain has fallen on your farm?  Or on your block of land down the road?  Do you sometimes forget to tip out the rain gauge?  Accurate rainfall figures for farm records are becoming more and more important in this age of transparency.  Knowing how much rain fell on any given day on your own farm or on a particular crop will give you the ability to make more accurate decisions.  Telemetered rain gauges save you the hassle of manually reading the rain gauge and provide up to date data straight to your phone or computer. 

Rain gauges can be installed along with your soil moisture probe and positioned under the irrigator or installed in a dryland area.  Positioning the rain gauge under the irrigator enables you to monitor exactly what application depth the irrigator is applying.  Application depths can change as a result of adding extra irrigators to the system, blocked or broken nozzles and changes to system pressures to name a few.  Excessive application depths are expected to account for on average 10% of water losses on an average irrigation system, that’s wasted power, water and most importantly money.  Not applying enough water may result in yield losses and shallow rooted plants.    

A telemetered rain gauge installed under the irrigator will also enable you to see the application rate applied.  If it is above the rates described for your situation in the table below you may be wasting water.  

Agri Optics can add a rain gauge to your soil moisture system to help your decision making.  Ring us today to talk about the options for your farm. 

Agri Optics office: (03) 302 9227
Cindy Lowe 021 796 834 or cindy@agrioptics.co.nz
Email: info@agrioptics.co.nz