The Bowden family of Bothwell in Tasmania have a proud tradition of innovation. In this week’s video (Here) we find out about three generations of innovation on the 15,000Ha landholding and the current “Pivot” to automation being taken by Will, the farm manager.
Automation as an efficiancy driver.
Will explains that his focus on automation has begun with the highest producing sections of the farm. As such, optimising the water inputs to higher yeilding areas will lead to faster payoff and less overall cost of implementation to the farm. Rather than trying to use tech to solve problems in low perfomring areas, he’s concentrating on efficiency gains in the higher yeilding areas where there will be a faster payoff.
Will is trialling Sentek soil moisture sensors at the moment in partnership with YBMIT, who monitor and install his tech. Will thoughrolt trials all of his gear prior to investing in multiple units, to ensure that it will do what he wants, is reliable and compatable with all of his other gear. Compatability often rears it’s head in this space and Will works closely with YBMIT to ensure that all of his sensors, valves and solenoids are compatable with the over-arching management system, run by three computers.
Own Your Data.
Will is a firm believer in ownership of information. He collects and stores all information on farm and does not use subscription based systems that share or take ownership of data. Will is a firm believer in data value and uses open source software to run the farm. Although this is more time consuming and expensive to set up, he believes that the long term result will be commercially favorable.
Watch for more!
Check out the video Here for more great insight into the farm management system and one amazing farming family.