Release of the White-fly Count app
mCROPs project of the Artificial Intelligence Research & Data Science labs of Makerere University is collaborating with National Crops Resources and Research Institute (NaCRRI) of NARO on several activities investigating and providing solutions in research and survey tasks that tend to be problematic for the agricultural experts in assessing national crop health.
Some of the tasks that tend to be problematic are; Vector & Symptom measurement, field diagnosis of the crops, efficient & cost-effective data collection methods and reporting tools among others.
Their focus is on the Cassava food crop with the Cassava Regional Center of Excellence.
In a recent development, the mCROPs project has developed a White-fly Count app to aide in the task of Vector measurement for the White-fly vector which devastates the Cassava crop by gaining nourishment from the crops and using it as a reproductive habitat.
The activities of the White-fly on the cassava crop lead to transmission of various cassava gemniviruses and direct leaf damage while feeding on it.
To understand and study the White-fly, their populations are an important input which becomes rather difficult and infeasible with the “Super Abundant” White-fly populations as those seen in East Africa especially Uganda.
To combat this, the mCROPs project has developed a White-fly Count app with both the mobile smart-phone app and a Web-server based app for providing counts of adult white-flies on a given leaf image.
With the mobile-based smart-phone White-fly counter app, a surveyor holds the device with the installed app over the leaf of interest and on taping the screen intiates a detection of adult White-fly and then their count/ number.
This app provides a Geo-tagged image of the leaf and an engraved count of white-flies which can be mapped to assess spread.
This comes in different version for different user groups with one specified for agricultural field surveyors, Cassava Breeder and then another for the research scholar of the white-fly.
With the Web-server based app, it allows for batch processing of images taken of adult white-fly on leaves. The user can take images from the field and upload them at once for batch processing using the Web-server for the White-fly count.
This is very useful for clients with very thin resources on their mobile platforms.
The White-fly Counter app provides an opportunity to produce consistent and quality data of the White-fly populations even in their Super Abundance state.
The mCROPs peoject will be launching the app at the premises of the National Crops Resources and Research Institute , while handing over the tool to the very experts who need it.
Author: Mutembesa Daniel
Mobile Crop surveillance
Artificial Intelligence Research & Data Science labs
Here see for yourself….