Agricultural Aviation and Wetlands Protection

Aviator's view SJ Valley - 5000 ft.   Today's agricultural aviator must possess the dual skills of a disciplined pilot and a highly trained agriculturist. To meet the strict demands of modern agricultural aviation hires and trains the best... estimated that at least 250 new pilots are needed annually in California.

   Additionally, international demand is growing and new career opportunities are appearing in forestry, fish and wildlife management, aerial fire fighting, and anywhere low altitude precision flying is required.


Air Tractor approach   In the modern world of agriculture, the only constant is change. This axiom also holds true for aerial application. Modern spray planes are single purpose, with advanced spray systems, incorporating all of the technical advances (e.g., GPS swath guidance) that are typical in all aspects of modern agriculture.

   Modern ag pilots are highly trained professionals, with ongoing upgrading of safety, chemical, technical and environmental concerns.


Aviator's eye-level view   Agricultural aviation is implementing an aerial applicator program which will ensure quality applicators to test and modify spray equipment and patterns, and assist in educating applicators in regard to drift management.

   Aerial application offers some unique advantages to modern West Side farmers. The ability to apply crop protection products in a timely manner (morning and evening desiccation), or application of fungicides, herbicides, or insecticides quickly; even in wet conditions. Crop loss due to compaction is nonexistent, as are ruts or trampled straw, which can cause problems when harvesting or direct seeding.


Blue Heron lagoon downstream   Global Positioning Services (GPS) and infrared satellite maps are used by skilled aviators to properly navigate and monitor physical areas of concern.

   With these tools of technology and water quality testing, the impact of urban development on West Side agronomy, wetlands, water resources, and wildlife is monitored continually.

   Education is at the forefront of Clovis Agricultural Wetlands Conservancy mission. By creating higher public awareness of key issues that affect the greater Clovis wetlands environment and wildlife, we hope to play a proactive role in advancing knowledge and informing public policy through information technology and New Media publishing.


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