Regulators look at increased drone use

20140710-191550-pic-293923908.jpgRather than a field of dreams, it looks like the future of farms is a field of drones.

Experts predict that the agriculture industry may soon account for roughly half of all drone flights in the United States.

As part of that trend, farmers from across the country gathered in central Illinois this week for the Precision Aerial Ag Show, a showcase of unmanned aerial vehicles, otherwise known as drones.

Stu Ellis, the event’s organizer, said people from more than 30 states and at least six ┬ácountries came to the two-day show in Decatur.

Drone use in farming is becoming standard as farmers seek more efficient ways to survey their fields and evaluate plant health.

“Just a tick under half of all U.S. flights over the next 10 years are going to involve our industry, period,” said Chad Colby, an unmanned aerial systems expert who runs the website “We’re the big player.”

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