DECATUR – What started as an assignment for three Iowa State University students has become a business that serves farmers working over 4 million acres from North Dakota to Ohio. Michael Koenig, Holden Nyhus and Stuart McCulloh were studying agriculture education with the expectation of becoming ag teachers.
Their class project involved creating a unique business plan and they decided to find a way, using technology, to allow farmers or crop scouts to identify and map pest problems faster and easier. Their ScoutPro apps were born to identify weeds and pests in the field using an iPad instead of lugging heavy books.
DECATUR, Ill. — Is it Palmer amaranth, redroot pigweed or common waterhemp? Is that gray leaf spot or northern corn leaf blight? Is there corn rootworm pressure? What is the threshold for European corn borer?
Agronomists can quickly identify plant diseases, pest pressure and thresholds, but it may be more challenging for others because how closely field problems resemble one another.
A trio of Iowa “farm boys” developed a tool while in college to simplify crop scouting and move it away from notepads to iPads. The story of ScoutPro began when Michael Koenig, Stuart McCulloh and Holden Nyhus were enrolled in an Entrepreneurship in Agriculture class at Iowa State University in 2010.