Friday, September 25, 2009

Aerial Crop Dusting

Every once in a while from the ground or up in the air, I see a crop duster at work. It is pretty amazing to watch. Then lately, I have been hearing how crop dusting or agriculture aerial application industry is doing pretty well and has advanced technically as well. It sounds like for the right person, it could be a good aviation career as an agricultural pilot.

Recent articles

Recently, there has been crop dusting articles in the Wall Street Journal and Associated Press. The Associated Press crop dusting article talks about the industry, and how it has increased recently. Some new sprays have come out for diseases that happen when crops are mature, these are hard to apply from the ground without destroying part of the valuable crop. Perfect for aerial application. In the Wall Street Journal crop dusting article, it also talks about how crop dusting is on the rise and is one of the few jobs a pilot can make decent money. But it really cautions that crop dusting is not for every pilot. This two articles sparked me to find an old AOPA Pilot magazine crop dusting article that I remembered from June 2007. It talks about how the industry has changed quite a bit to using GPS significantly for tracking and accurate spraying as well as using Air Tractor turbine driven turboprop planes or turbine converted older planes. If you can find your old AOPA magazine, I remember some good pictures to go along with the on-line article.


Pictures and articles don't do cropdusting justice, so I thought I would look on YouTube. Yep, there are some good videos there.

More Good Crop Dusting Information

Digging around a little more, I found an article on crop dusting and a little on becoming an ag pilot.

Then I found the most crop dusting information on an association for aerial crop dusting: National Agricultural Aviation Association (NAAA). On the NAAA web site there are multiple articles on becoming an ag pilot and getting a crop dusting job as well as links to FAA publications on crop dusting and other links as well as a convention coming up for crop dusting. Lots of good stuff on the NAAA site.

I also found this crop duster / agricultural pilot information on an aviation career website.


It is an amazing industry and amazing to watch the pilots doing their job.



Bill Lavender said...

Check out for the "most" ag-aviation information. -BL

Packaging Supplier said...

At 64 I stood on the road and took clips of crop dusting and posted it here. But yours is very cool, just love it and I love the music. Your video was very exciting, loved it, I could feel the wind on the wings, great video, thanks!

Anonymous said...

I know this is off your subject but I have a brother who has been an Ag Pilot for 35 years and he is now having mental problems. Is there any information available about chemical damage to the human brain from spraying defoliants and pesticides? Thank you