Demos shine light on impressive spot sprayer features

07 April 2020

Northern Wheatbelt growers pictured discussing the workings of the new WeedSeeker 2 spot spraying system from Trimble during an on-farm demonstration.

SUMMER weeds are yet to be a widespread issue for WA growers, but this has not deterred them from viewing demonstrations of the new WeedSeeker 2 system from Trimble, intent on capturing the next gain in farming efficiency, chemical savings and better control of hard-to-kill weeds with the latest spot spray technology.

Numerous demonstrations in the northern wheatbelt have attracted existing WeedSeeker customers as well as other interested growers and already notched some sales, according to Craig Harrington with McIntosh & Son at Geraldton.

Craig said recent demonstrations had been held near Mullewa, Moonyoonooka and Binnu and one of the biggest attractions of the WeedSeeker 2 technology for growers, in contrast to other alternate systems, was the fact it was ISOBUS compatible.

“It interfaces with most existing ISOs, so there is no need for another controller,’’ Craig said.

He said through the ISOBUS, section control and weed mapping were other exclusive features.

The weed mapping pinpoints where and when weeds are treated in paddocks. It shows where the WeedSeeker 2 sensors have been turning on and off and, therefore, where weeds are more dominant.

“Growers will know where they have been and what they have sprayed, which can help them target weeds. They can hit some of these areas again later and help manage weed resistance,’’ Craig said.

Up to 18 individual sections can be set up along booms with the WeedSeeker 2 sensors and growers can manipulate the number of sensors per section to suit their particular farming system, such as tramlining.

Craig said existing WeedSeeker customers were especially impressed with the intelligent, self-learning sensors that provide for automatic calibration.

Instead of requiring recalibration whenever field conditions change, the new sensors automatically adjust to the environment they are working in, ensuring maximum efficiency during operation.

Craig said the lighter weight of the new WeedSeeker 2 sensors also extended their suitability for most booms, including wider platforms.

The new compact sensors are now 50 per cent lighter, helping to reduce the overall weight of the system on spray booms, while their spacing along booms has widened from 38 centimetres to 50cm, effectively reducing sensor numbers by 30pc.

Compared with other similar systems that have sensors spaced at every meter along booms, the 50cm spacing also provides for double the resolution when targeting weeds, which is especially valuable in situations with heavy stubble burdens.

WeedSeeker 2 also is not required to be fitted to ground-following booms. It can easily be retrofitted to most existing suspended booms.

A newly redesigned quick-attach bracket kit allows quick removal of the sensors from booms and an easy return to other spraying activity.

National distributor, McIntosh Distribution, is demonstrating the WeedSeeker 2 spot spraying system throughout the State. Growers interested in viewing the new features and full workings of the latest system can contact their local McIntosh & Son dealer to arrange a demonstration.