Skip to main content
ARS Home » Midwest Area » Columbia, Missouri » Cropping Systems and Water Quality Research » Research » Research Project #436741

Research Project: Hay Yield Mapping by Proximal and Remote Sensing

Location: Cropping Systems and Water Quality Research

Project Number: 5070-12000-001-004-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Aug 1, 2020
End Date: May 31, 2024

Develop, apply, and evaluate methods to map hay yield at the sub-field scale.

Although systems exist to weigh hay bales, measuring and mapping hay yield at a finer spatial scale is not a mature technology. In this project, ARS and the Cooperator will evaluate multiple approaches to hay yield measurement, including proximal (i.e., ground based) sensing of the standing crop and remote sensing by unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). For improved accuracy, methods of combining proximal and remote sensing data will be examined. Hay bale weight data and area-based sampling of standing crop will provide ground-truth data. Appropriate machine learning (ML) models to estimate yield will be applied and validated. Hay yield maps of the CMRB LTAR (Central Mississippi River Basin Long-Term Agroecosystem Research) plots and fields will be produced. Protocols for ongoing hay yield mapping will be developed.