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Case Study: McCoy Farm
SitePro moves into the agriculture industry, helping McCoy Farm conserve and manage water remotely.
Water is a valuable and scarce resource in West Texas, so managing and conserving the available supply is of the utmost importance. This is especially crucial for farms in the Panhandle, whose irrigation and crops depend on the finite resource.
McCoy Farm is located about an hour northwest of Lubbock and consists of fields of cotton and water-thirsty corn. Farmers ran into their own set of water preservation issues when it was realized the aquifer the farm uses was being depleted at a rapid pace. The owner and farm crew members had no way to monitor or control how much water was being distributed to the crops.
The water management issue was only heightened by the fact that the out-of-town farm was an hour-drive away from anyone affiliated it. Farmer Conner Wilmeth and crew members were driving to the site as often as two times a day to check the wells and look for cavitation, putting a lot of miles and wear and tear on equipment.
At the beginning of 2021, owner David Bateman realized SitePro could be a solution to the farm's water management and remote problems.
McCoy is now the original agriculture set-up for SitePro.
"It's really kind of a testament to SitePro and our software solution," said Operations Director Paden Ferrero.
Remote Control and Monitoring
"We're doing pretty much full monitoring and control," Ferrero said.
SitePro is providing nearly complete control at the farm now. Wilmeth is able to control and monitor the water wells, pumps and the field actuators that send the water to the field. And instead of taking countless trips to the farm every week, farm crew members can simply check on everything on their phones or computers.
"The biggest advantage for me and for my operations is just the labor savings. With irrigation we're doing a lot of daily checking. We're checking the wells. We're checking the filter station. We basically eliminate 80 percent of that," Wilmeth said.
If a pump or water well is not working correctly, SitePro sends alerts to Wilmeth to let him know so he can make the necessary adjustments with just a few clicks on his phone.
And with two different crops comes two different water requirements. With SitePro, Wilmeth is able to determine how much water goes to each field and when.
"I can choose to water one crop more than the other and instead of having to come up here [McCoy} and reprogram my controller, I can do it remotely. And I can do the same thing with fertilizing," he said.
With that remote control and monitoring capability comes the ability to control and conserve water usage. Bateman and Wilmeth can now see how much water the wells are using, check the aquifer levels, and watch any trends.
"It allows us on a daily basis to control how much water we're getting out of the ground which prolongs the longevity of the pumps that we're pumping," Wilmeth said.
Bateman also emphasized the importance of water preservation.
"It's really important on a farm like this that uses a lot of water to irrigate cotton and corn...it's our responsibility to conserve and manage the water supply so if we can get more efficiency, more utilization, less usage, and really manage the water source for the long run. It helps ensure we have that natural resource for generations to come," he said.
Along with being able to see the operations through the InSite view, a security camera has also been installed at the farm. SitePro offers cameras that sync with alerts so not only can the customer visualize their site in real-time from their device, SitePro pinpoints specific instances where something may have gone wrong.
"I can visibly see if there's been any mechanical failures or vandalism's been a big thing on a couple of farms so we can keep up with any of that if that happens," Wilmeth said.