Precision Agriculture Technicians

Apply geospatial technologies, including geographic information systems (GIS) and Global Positioning System (GPS), to agricultural production or management activities, such as pest scouting, site-specific pesticide application, yield mapping, or variable-rate irrigation. May use computers to develop or analyze maps or remote sensing images to compare physical topography with data on soils, fertilizer, pests, or weather.

Median Annual Wage: $44,650

Education: Bachelor's degree (43%); Associate's degree (25%); Post-secondary certificate (11%)

Projected Growth: Average (8% to 14%)

Related Job Titles: Crop Specialist; Nutrient Management Specialist; Precision Agriculture Department Manager; Precision Agronomist; Precision Farming Coordinator

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Precision Agriculture Technicians.

More Life, Physical, and Social Science Careers

  • Create, layer, and analyze maps showing precision agricultural data, such as crop yields, soil characteristics, input applications, terrain, drainage patterns, or field management history.
  • Document and maintain records of precision agriculture information.
  • Compile and analyze geospatial data to determine agricultural implications of factors such as soil quality, terrain, field productivity, fertilizers, and weather conditions.
  • Divide agricultural fields into georeferenced zones, based on soil characteristics and production potentials.
  • Develop soil sampling grids or identify sampling sites, using geospatial technology, for soil testing on characteristics such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium content, pH, and micronutrients.
  • Compare crop yield maps with maps of soil test data, chemical application patterns, or other information to develop site-specific crop management plans.
  • Recommend best crop varieties or seeding rates for specific field areas, based on analysis of geospatial data.
  • Draw or read maps, such as soil, contour, or plat maps.
  • Apply knowledge of government regulations when making agricultural recommendations.
  • Process and analyze data from harvester monitors to develop yield maps.
  • Demonstrate the uses and applications of geospatial technology, such as Global Positioning System (GPS), geographic information systems (GIS), automatic tractor guidance systems, variable rate chemical input applicators, surveying equipment, and computer mapping software.
  • Program farm equipment, such as variable-rate planting equipment or pesticide sprayers, based on input from crop scouting and analysis of field condition variability.
  • Analyze remote sensing imagery to identify relationships between soil quality, crop canopy densities, light reflectance, and weather history.
  • Identify spatial coordinates, using remote sensing and Global Positioning System (GPS) data.
  • Prepare reports summarizing field productivity and profitability in graphical or tabular form.
  • Install, calibrate, or maintain sensors, mechanical controls, GPS-based vehicle guidance systems, or computer settings.
  • Identify areas in need of pesticide treatment by analyzing geospatial data to determine insect movement and damage patterns.
  • Contact equipment manufacturers for technical assistance, as needed.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Precision Agriculture Technicians.

  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Precision Agriculture Technicians.

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