The Kenya Flying Labs has launched a seed planting drone that dispenses seeds in a move to promote the use of technology in agriculture.
In an event attended by agriculture journalists and specialists from research institutions including The Kenya Forestry Research Institute, Kenya Flying Labs (KFL) which is a not-for-profit organization launched specialized drones fully fitted with seed dispensers that easily, precisely and efficiently drop seed balls with precision.
“The drone mechanism,” as explained by Mohammed Akasha, one of the technical team from KFL, “is a new technology to replace the traditional methods which have been used to regenerate the forest cover in the country which have worked in the days however not to the rate required to attain the 10% forest cover by 2030.’’
As he concluded his short speech, he recommended that institutions involved in forest conservations and the government embrace their technology which will be the fastest direction the world should take to combat global warming.
He confirmed that the technology has been proved to be good for planting trees in large and inaccessible areas which have not been reached over the years because of various reasons including harsh weather conditions and fear of being attacked by wild animals.
While demonstrating how the drone works, Silas Kironji, a certified drone pilot from Drone Space Kenya, said that the drones could fly for fifteen minutes on a single battery charge covering to about 0.8ha of land.
“The seeder drone carries to seven kilograms of seeds and dispenses five seeds at a time,” he added.
While embracing the technology, Dr. Jane Njuguna, Senior Deputy Director Research and Development from KEFRI elaborated that the seeder drones complemented helicopters and light wing airplanes that were also used for dispensing of seeds, however at prohibitive costs.
‘’The Kenya Flying Lab and WeRobotics’ technology offers an affordable method of regenerating forests and making our country greener while curbing global warming effects,” she added.