Irrigation Leader
  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    Removing Nitrates From Groundwater via Wood Chip Walls

    Like many agricultural regions in the United States, New Zealand’s South Island deals with the contamination of its groundwater by nitrates. However, the situation is distinct in two respects. First, the alluvial gravel aquifers that underlie much of the intensively farmed land on New Zealand’s South Island are extremely permeable and are characterized by fast groundwater velocities. Second, the primary source of nitrogen in the groundwater is the waste produced by New Zealand’s millions of dairy cows. In this interview, Lee Burbery, a scientist at the Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR) in Christchurch, speaks with Irrigation Leader about the technical, political, and economic challenges of combatting nitrate pollution…

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    The Voyager: An Affordable Response to Nitrate Contamination

    Many rural agricultural areas across the United States have issues with nitrate contamination in their groundwater but lack the funds to build a large water treatment plant. That’s where Filtra-Systems steps in. The Oklahoma-based company has created the Voyager, a mobile water treatment station that is more affordable than a full-scale facility. Small communities can buy one or more Voyagers to treat their water, or can enter into service contracts with Filtra, reducing their up-front costs even more. In this interview, Kent Foster, Filtra’s senior vice president of business development, speaks with Irrigation Leader about his company’s solution and why it makes sense for rural communities with nitrate contamination issues.

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    Fighting Groundwater Nitrate Contamination in the Bazile Groundwater Management Area

    Like many agricultural areas with sandy soils, northeastern Nebraska deals with nitrate from fertilizer leaching into its groundwater. In one region in particular, nitrate levels have risen to such a level that they threaten the health of the residents of 10 rural communities that are fully dependent on groundwater for their drinking supplies. In response, the four natural resources districts (NRDs) whose territories overlap this area have decided to work together to address nitrate pollution in the area they have designated the Bazile Groundwater Management Area (BGMA). By joining forces and funds and applying for federal and state grants, they are supporting mitigation activities like education and awareness raising, reporting…

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    Besler Industries’ Durable Pickup Flatbeds

    Nebraska-based Besler Industries is a family-owned company that builds bale loaders, pivot track closers, tillage equipment, and other machines well known to irrigated farmers. Another of its most popular products is its pickup truck flatbed. The flatbeds are customizable and can accommodate a number of modular boxes according to the user’s needs. Best of all, they’re so durable that they often outlive the trucks they’re installed on. Besler’s flatbeds will be of interest to any irrigation district or organization with a fleet of pickups.  In this interview, Herb Besler, the owner of Besler Industries; Roland Besler, the production manager; and Cliff Kester, the inside sales manager, speak with Irrigation Leader…

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    Dawson Tire’s Mighty RhinoGator Tire

    Dawson Tire and Wheel, based in Gothenburg, Nebraska, is well known for its irrigation tires and wheels. Its most famous product is quite recognizable: the bright green polyethylene RhinoGator pivot tire. The solid RhinoGator will never go flat or fill with water or mud, and it is also UV protected. In this interview, Eric MacPherson, the founder and chief executive officer (CEO) of Dawson Tire and Wheel, speaks with Irrigation Leader about his company and how he developed the RhinoGator tire.

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    Improving Fish Passage With the Flexi Baffle

    Efforts to improve fish passage in ecosystems like the Yakima River basin typically focus on large dams that block fish in a particularly obvious way. However, thousands of culverts in the small tributaries that feed a river system can block salmon and other fish from their spawning grounds, too. One solution for this problem is the Flexi Baffle, a New Zealand–developed product that allows fish to pass through culverts without reducing the capacity of the culvert. In North America, the Flexi Baffle is supplied by S. Scott & Associates, LLC, a natural resource consulting firm. In this interview, Shane Scott, the owner of S. Scott & Associates, speaks with Irrigation…

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    Developing Weed-Resistant Concrete

    Any irrigation district with open canals has to deal with weeds, algae, and moss. Removing these obstacles to water flow can be expensive, time-consuming, and environmentally hazardous. This is the problem that Craig Gyselinck, environmental assistant manager at Washington’s Quincy-Columbia Basin Irrigation District, is seeking to solve with his research into weed-resistant concrete. In this interview, Mr. Gyselinck speaks with Irrigation Leader Managing Editor Joshua Dill about the research grant he recently received and what he aims to accomplish with it.

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    Whooshh’s Innovative Fish Passage Solution—Save Water, Save Fish

    Fish passage requirements can pose a challenge to dam owners and operators, including irrigation districts. Traditional fish passage installations like fish ladders can require a significant amount of time and money to install. To solve this problem, Whooshh Innovations has created a portable, modular, and technologically advanced fish passage system that accelerates fish through a tube up and over a dam in seconds. Its more advanced models can also scan the fish that pass through them and record their size, species, and other characteristics. In this interview, Michael Messina, Whooshh Innovations’ director of market development and business affairs, speaks with Irrigation Leader Managing Editor Joshua Dill about Whooshh Innovations’ fish…

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    How Lindsay’s Remote Pivot Management Software Boosts Efficiency

    Lindsay Corporation has been innovating in the irrigation and infrastructure worlds for over half a century. Based in Omaha, Nebraska, the company has a global presence. Lindsay’s innovative tools for irrigated agriculture include its FieldNET integrated remote monitoring and management software and its full line of FieldNET hardware devices. In this interview, Reece Andrews, a product manager at Lindsay, speaks with Irrigation Leader Managing Editor Joshua Dill about FieldNET and how it has affected growers and irrigators across the country.

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    McCrometer’s Pivot-Ready Flow Meters

    McCrometer and its engineering team have built flow meters for over 60 years, refining and improving them along the way. From mechanical propeller meters to electromagnetic meters with signal outputs, McCrometer has products for a wide variety of uses and situations. As center-pivot irrigation becomes more technologically sophisticated and draws on a wider range of data, flow meters are becoming an integral part of a center-pivot system. McCrometer’s flow meters can easily send data to a center-pivot control panel, providing a reliable measure of water flow on a continuous basis. In this interview, Ken Quandt, the government relations specialist for McCrometer, speaks with Irrigation Leader Managing Editor Joshua Dill about how…