As the world’s climate continues to worsen and industrial agriculture increase year after year, its inevitable that bee populations will rapidly decrease. This has forced farmers in Israel and Australia to try out new methods for pollinating their crops.
The job of pollinating crops is usually done by bees and other natural pollinators like beetles, moths, and flies. However, due to the lack of bees, an almond orchard in the area of Tel Arad in a desert plain in Southern Israel has turned to mechanical equipment to pollinate its crops.
The farm used systems which involved a tractor pulling a mast equipped with about a dozen small ‘cannons’ that fired precise shots of pollen at the trees, enabling them to fertilize.
Machines bearing the brunt of pollinating crops as bee global population shrinks dramaticallyhttps://t.co/sfrLPcfld2
— DAILY SABAH (@DailySabah) April 20, 2020
The mechanical pollination system, developed by Edete Precision Technologies for Agriculture mirrors the work of the honey bee, beginning with a mechanical harvest of pollen from flowers and ending with a targeted distribution using LIDAR sensors, the same technology used in some self-driving cars.
According to Eylam Ran, CEO of Edete Precision Technologies for Agriculture “We see a crisis in 15 years where we don’t have enough insects in the world to actually do pollination and most of our vitamins and fruits are gone.”
Edete Precision Technologies currently has small-scale operations ongoing in several orchards in Israel and Australia, and has plans to expand their business to the United States by 2023.
Image: Twitter/The bee centre