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Precision Agriculture Technicians

Precision Agriculture Technicians

Description

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.

Skills

  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • 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.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
  • Systems Evaluation - Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
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Knowledge

  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Food Production - Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
  • Geography - Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
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Tasks

  • Analyze geospatial data to determine agricultural implications of factors such as soil quality, terrain, field productivity, fertilizers, or weather conditions.
  • Analyze data from harvester monitors to develop yield maps.
  • Analyze remote sensing imagery to identify relationships between soil quality, crop canopy densities, light reflectance, and weather history.
  • Advise farmers on upgrading Global Positioning System (GPS) equipment to take advantage of newly installed advanced satellite technology.
  • Apply precision agriculture information to specifically reduce the negative environmental impacts of farming practices.
  • Compare crop yield maps with maps of soil test data, chemical application patterns, or other information to develop site-specific crop management plans.
  • Collect information about soil or field attributes, yield data, or field boundaries, using field data recorders and basic geographic information systems (GIS).
  • Contact equipment manufacturers for technical assistance, as needed.
  • Create, layer, and analyze maps showing precision agricultural data, such as crop yields, soil characteristics, input applications, terrain, drainage patterns, or field management history.
  • Divide agricultural fields into georeferenced zones, based on soil characteristics and production potentials.
  • Demonstrate the 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, or computer mapping software.
  • Draw or read maps, such as soil, contour, or plat maps.
  • Document and maintain records of precision agriculture information.
  • Identify areas in need of pesticide treatment by analyzing geospatial data to determine insect movement and damage patterns.
  • Identify spatial coordinates, using remote sensing and Global Positioning System (GPS) data.
  • Install, calibrate, or maintain sensors, mechanical controls, GPS-based vehicle guidance systems, or computer settings.
  • Participate in efforts to advance precision agriculture technology, such as developing advanced weed identification or automated spot spraying systems.
  • Provide advice on the development or application of better boom-spray technology to limit the overapplication of chemicals and to reduce the migration of chemicals beyond the fields being treated.
  • Program farm equipment, such as variable-rate planting equipment or pesticide sprayers, based on input from crop scouting and analysis of field condition variability.
  • Prepare reports in graphical or tabular form, summarizing field productivity or profitability.
  • Recommend best crop varieties or seeding rates for specific field areas, based on analysis of geospatial data.
  • Use geospatial technology to develop soil sampling grids or identify sampling sites for testing characteristics such as nitrogen, phosphorus, or potassium content, pH, or micronutrients.
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Work Activities

  • Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
  • Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
  • Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
  • Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
  • Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment - Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
  • Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
  • Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.
  • Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment - Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.
  • Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
  • Selling or Influencing Others - Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.
  • Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
  • Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
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Personality Traits

  • Achievement/Effort: Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility: Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • Analytical Thinking: Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
  • Attention to Detail: Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Concern for Others: Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
  • Cooperation: Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Dependability: Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Independence: Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
  • Initiative: Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Innovation: Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
  • Integrity: Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Leadership: Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
  • Persistence: Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Self Control: Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Social Orientation: Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
  • Stress Tolerance: Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
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Related Careers

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