Drones are being used in RS in research to test identification of sawdust beetles in black wattle

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Image: Seapi

The Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock, Sustainable Production and Irrigation of Rio Grande do Sul (Seapi) informs that research has been using drones to obtain multispectral images of black wattle plantations, with the aim of assisting in the identification of sawdust beetle infestations in the culture.

The study is conducted by Seapi’s Department of Agricultural Diagnosis and Research, through a partnership between the State Center for Forestry Diagnosis and Research (Ceflor), in Santa Maria, the State Center for Diagnosis and Research in Digital Agriculture and Irrigation (Cepadi) , in Vacaria, and the Federal University of Santa Maria (UFSM).

The research works with high spatial and radiometric resolution images obtained by a multispectral sensor coupled to a drone, combining artificial intelligence techniques to obtain the results.

“The project will allow the development of a technique, for use in commercial plantations, that will quickly and efficiently detect trees that are being attacked by the sawdust beetle. In this way, it will enable management actions necessary for its control.”details analyst Juliana Marchesan, from Ceflor.

The study is taking place in two black wattle plantations located in Ceflor de Santa Maria. Initially, simulations were carried out on healthy trees of the girdling caused by the sawdust beetle. Subsequently, a drone flight was carried out to obtain the images.

“The next step will be to identify, through images and the use of artificial intelligence, the trees that were damaged and thus be able to map the degree of severity of the attacks on an individual level”explains.

Black wattle has great economic importance for Rio Grande do Sul: more than half of the total area of ​​cultivated forest of this species in Brazil is found on Rio Grande do Sul soil. Among the pests that attack black wattle crops, the sawdust beetle is the most economically relevant.

“These insects ring the branches of trees, causing these branches to fall and impacting the development of plants”adds the analyst.

In addition to Juliana, the research group is made up of several researchers in the area, including Rosana Matos de Moraes and Cléber Witt Saldanha, from Ceflor; researcher Priscylla Ferraz Câmara Monteiro, from Cepadi; doctoral students Lucas José Mendes and Jocimar Caiafa Milagre, from UFSM; and professor Rodrigo Otávio Câmara Monteiro, from the Federal Institute of Rio Grande do Sul (IFRS), Campus Bento Gonçalves.

DDPA researchers Rosana, Cleber, Juliana and Priscylla – Image: Seapi

Seapi information

The article is in Portuguese

Brazil

Tags: Drones research test identification sawdust beetles black wattle

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