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FAQ's

Answers to some of the common (and not so common) questions we get asked.

Click on a question to reveal an answer or explanation.

Do you do fleet management?

No sorry.

We provide mapping and other geographical data solutions. Our field crew we use a GARMIN product for this but we don’t manage or offer this service ourselves.

Do you map in my area?

Yes – if you’re New Zealand!

We’ve mapped properties in every region of the country from Southland to Northland and everywhere in between. For a price estimate just submit a quote with the physical address of the farm/orchard to be mapped.

How do I get a quote for a farm map?

Just click on the get a quote button at the on our website and it will take you to the quote form.

There is a quick quote option where you only need to fill in the basic information we need in order to price your job for you.

There’s also a full quote option where you can provide more detailed information and request printed map products.

Why am I being asked all this information just for a quote?

To give you a quote we need the following information:

  1. Contact name
  2. Contact phone
  3. Contact email
  4. Physical address of the farm
  5. Total property size
  6. Total number of paddocks, or estimate as close as you can

1-3: We need to know who we are contacting and where to send the quote to

4-6: We need to know where the farm is located and the basic size and level of detail to expect so we can price your job as accurately as possible for you.

Why can’t I get a quote from your Facebook page?

There’s a lot of differences in properties and each price is tailored specifically for your requirements.

To give you an accurate price we need detailed information, other than just the size of your farm. The easiest way to get a price is to use the online form here get a quote.

For any other questions feel free to get in touch.

How do I confirm my boundary for you to fly?

A PDF will be attached to your quote with a draft boundary that you’ll need to confirm as correct or edit.

It’ll  show the outline of the property area with satellite imagery underneath for reference and include the total area of the shape, which can help confirm it’s correct.

If the PDF isn’t attached it’s because…

  1. the information provided didn’t have enough information for us to complete an accurate search for the boundary
  2. the land parcel data doesn’t match the information provided for the address

In either case once you accept your quote, we’ll confirm the boundary is true and correct before loading the job into our system.

See an example below.

Can’t you just find my farm?

Generally speaking we can track down the right property area, but sometimes it doesn’t match up.

For the reasons mentioned in other questions, the data might not be clearly available to us when you have submitted a quote or the database we are accessing is out of date with the ownership details.

We really appreciate you taking the time to go through this process with us.

I’m interested in the quote, and want a map done – but I’m not ready yet. Can I still book in the job to get this price?

Absolutely!

We’ve had multiple customers book in jobs for later dates so the grass was bit greener or any development on site was completed.

If you’re interested in a future map just contact us and we can book the job in and place it on hold until a specified date. We’ll contact you at that date to confirm it’s ready to fly.

You won’t be charged for the job until it’s flown and drafted.

So, I’ve accepted my quote, now what?

We’ll confirm your details are correct and book it into the system as ready to fly.

Once that boundary is confirmed true and correct, it’ll be passed to our aerial capture team to review, plan and schedule the flight of your property.

We’ll keep you in the loop for each major step in the process so you are up to date. If you have any questions along the way, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Why haven’t you flown my farm yet/how will I know when my farm has been flown?

Once a job is booked in, we hand it to our aerial capture team to review, plan and schedule.

We are always on the lookout for suitable flying days, and will send you a notification via email to confirm that this part of the job is complete.

If we haven’t yet flown your farm, it will be for the following reasons.

  • The weather has not been suitable at your site for aerial capture e.g. cloudy weather which impacts the imagery quality meaning we cannot complete the flight
  • The weather, while clear and sunny, was unsafe for another reason such as high winds in your area. We need to keep the plane nice and level to ensure the quality of your imagery and the resulting data. The safety of our crew is also paramount, so we will not fly unless it is safe to do so.
  • Cloud cover/weather changing. While it may look clear and fine on the ground, the cloud could be deceptively lower than you think and may be in the way of us flying. The aerial team while reviewing your site, plan the altitude needed to fly your farm, so if there is any interference at this level, we cannot fly the job at that time.

Additionally, we have on occasion been to a job slightly further afield from where we are based, and due to the mountainous terrain – the weather packed in while en route, so we had to abort that mission and await the next clear day to fly.

  • Mechanical issues. This is rarely the case but there has been one occasion where in the pre-flight checks, a mechanical issue was noted and needed repair before flying was safe to commence.

We will always do our best to keep you in the loop with the latest weather developments and if there are delays on your job; but if you want to get in touch to check up, please just send us an email with your name and farm name as a reference for us to look into it for you.

Why do people need to come on site?

Imagery of your farm is collected from our fixed-wing aircraft or UAV, depending on the equipment used for the data collection and other influencing factors, it may be necessary for a surveyor to come and collect some precision location points around your farm to ensure absolute accuracy in the final map.

What happens when the surveyors come on site?

They will show up with everything they need to get the data required. They will contact you to arrange the site visit to ensure they have permission and the suitable people are notified of their arrival.

If there are any health and safety protocols you need to check off, they will meet with you to do this as an induction to your site.

They will know where to go to get what they need, and be kitted out with the equipment to get there. For personnel safety reasons, we do not use any of your farm vehicles or equipment while on site.

The field crew all have farm experience and know how to safely traverse many types of farms, and how to respect keeping gates closed etc. so there’s nothing to worry about there.

If you have any other questions for them, that would best be handled over the phone when they call to arrange the visit, or in person when they arrive to site.

Why does my draft map say xxx Ha, when it should be xxx Ha?

The software we use to produce your farm map calculates the areas we have drawn from our geo-referenced imagery with technical specs being:

+/-15cm GSD, X/Y axis 30cm, Z axis 60cm.

When we add them all the areas at the end of the drafting process we are left with the farm total which is displayed on your map in the legend at the bottom.

If this differs from what you think it should be, this could be for a number of reasons.

  1. The previous map or survey was produced several or more years ago and simply not as accurate as the newer technology is today. Typically, the area total only changes slightly from what is expected per paddock, but can be more in extreme cases or updates from very old maps.
  2. The boundary we have drawn for aerial capture is incorrect or is calculating something that should not be included in your map.

Often this is where a neighbouring properties paddock or residential property has been included in the map by mistake and is being added to the total. Just let us know to remove these in the revisions and that total will be re-calculated.

This is also why capturing the boundary correctly from you at the start of the journey is vital, so we can avoid errors like this. Please be sure it is as accurate as possible when booking in the job with us.  It’s easy to remove an area from the map, but we can’t add it in if we haven’t captured it with the fly over!

How will I know how much my paddocks have changed by?

We now offer a new service called a “farm map variance report”.

If you are able to provide us with a copy of your old map (that is legible so we can see the areas), we will compare these to your data and provide a report for you. As an example of what to expect, please see one we produced for a customer early 2019.

If you have your old map data (in your farm software or is an older farm works map we can request data for), we can directly compare where the fence lines were on your old map to where they are on the new one!

Please see an example of that below:

How much do those farm variance maps cost?

Absolutely nothing at the moment!

Usually they would be about $250 + GST each, but we are running a deal for the whole of 2019 where it is free!

As long as you indicate interest in having one done, and can provide at least one of either an old map or the farm data, we can do this for you, no problem.

Why is an area included in my farm that is my neighbour’s property, not mine?

As per a related question above, due to the age and often inaccurate boundaries of land parcels we receive for your property – we may sometimes include areas that are not actually yours.

We follow the boundary as carefully as possible and for the most part can see that if the boundary starts to go partially into another paddock but it’s not including it, then it is likely to not be part of the property so we will leave this out.

However, sometimes the boundary file will cover most of an area so we add it in for safe measure. Just let us know which areas are not to be included in the map and we can remove these for you in the revisions. See the examples below:

Alternatively, if we have missed and area that was not included, please mark this roughly on the map of its general location and rough shape and we will add that in for you and send it back to you via email as a revision to be checked to see if it is now correct.

Hopefully it has been included in the flight path as we only fly a relatively small buffer zone to save processing time and aerial capture time to keep the cost to you as low as we can – this is why confirming the correct boundary with us as close as possible when booking the job is CRUCIAL so please be sure you haven’t missed anything out!

Why area totals can differ between revisions

Following from above, area totals can change between each revised version due to making changes to the property boundary (removing or adding areas) as well as smaller changes within the farm map to area types.

For example, in the draft an area has been marked as non-grazing but is actually part of the paddock and to be included in the effective area total, these numbers will be updated in the revised copy to reflect this.

Sometimes this can change both the farm total and area type totals between each revised version as these changes are made, areas are re-calculated and updated in the legend.

If you think something isn’t quite right, please let us know and we will check that for you and walk you through the area totals and reasons for that.

Can I add (feature) to my farm map?

There are many items that might be handy to have on a farm map, and many different types of map that could be useful too! However, not only do we want the map to be crisp and clear – so not wanting to clutter it up with lots of things.

If you would like something added to your map that isn’t there, please get in touch with us to discuss the options available for this.

Please note, some items that are more complex or well beyond the template available may incur an additional drafting fee of $150/hour.

See a list of standard inclusions (and not so standard features we can add).

Legend categories for areas, and how we define them here at GPS-it for the purposes of your map. A.K.A – what do you mean by x?

Most will be pretty straightforward but sometimes areas can blend together and sometimes be included/excluded from a paddock by preference. If something isn’t quite right you can always request and areas classification/coding to be changed in your revision notes. As a quick guide to how we define and map areas, please see the table below.

What do I do with my draft map now?

Once you have received your draft map (by default this is sent via email as a PDF copy), all you need to do is follow the instructions with the email it was sent with.

Essentially what we need you to do is:

  • Print out the copy with and without imagery on it, take a good look and make sure all the fence lines are correct (marking any we have missed or crossing out ones that need to be removed)
  • Take a look at all the troughs and/or tanks, have we missed any? If so please mark these as dots on the map where they should be and we will add them in, or if it’s not meant to be there, cross out the ones on the map you have printed.
  • Make sure all the areas are classified into their different types correctly e.g. sometimes we may have marked an area as service as per our guidelines when identifying it by the imagery, but it might actually be an effective area. Just make a note of this in that area (or with a line drawn from the note, to the area) to let us know what to change it to.
  • Also, to draw on any missing areas e.g. a non-grazing area or cross them out if they are to be removed and added to the paddock.
  • Then we can get to labelling. If there have been a lot of changes to the map you have printed and it is looking a bit messy, it might be best to print off another copy to label the paddocks for us. This is simply labelling each paddock area with the name or number you use to identify them, we will add these in and the final printed version will show these for you for quick and easy identification.

Please make any of these changes as clearly as possible with a ballpoint pen so we can read it.

If we can’t read it or is in some way unclear for the drafter working on the map, we will get in contact by phone or email to clarify and then make that change for you.

Typically, these changes will be made and returned to you within a few days, however if there are many other jobs that have also returned revisions in a short space of time, there may be a slight delay and take a few days more than this.

This is a rare occurrence and we will always do our best to get these back to you ASAP, if we are unable to we will email with an indication of when it will be ready for you.

Can I get a hard copy sent out instead of emails?

Absolutely! Just let us know as soon as possible. If you know you prefer this when booking in the job, letting us know and we will post it out directly to you.

It can take a few days, what with rural deliveries and can also get damaged and lost along the way – so please keep that in mind when requesting this service.

I can’t print my map, or am having trouble viewing my printed versions

If you are not able to print your farm, or have a large farm that a typical home printer at A4 size is just not going to handle well, then editing the PDF directly is a good option.

We will have a guide up shortly on how to do that if you haven’t done that before, but in the meantime, a quick Google search will show you how.

However, if you are having any trouble with these methods, let us know and we can arrange for a larger size to be printed out and sent to you in the post.

Why am I doing all the work? Surely you should be able to see all these things yourself?

Most of the time we can, and with your property being flown with our aerial capture method, the changes needed should be minimal.

However, there is always room for human error as well as limitations of the imagery in some places. Sometimes we simply do miss a trough because we cannot see it due to being completely under tree overhang that we simply wouldn’t be able to identify without your help.

Many times, we have also had farms that are currently undergoing changes or have recently had changes made to it since the farm has been flown such as putting in a new fence or pulling one out, or troughs that appear in the imagery that have now been moved elsewhere.

This is why the revision process is crucial and we ask for your input before approving the map. We are relying on your expert knowledge of your property that we simply don’t have to help us get your map in tip top shape and how you want it.

How do I make revisions to my map?

When we issue the draft to you, we send instructions on how to complete this.

If for some reason you haven’t received this guide, please let us know so we can send it through again, or arrange to talk your through it over the phone. It’s nice and easy, and doesn’t take too long at all once you know how.

If there is anything you want to add to the map that isn’t mentioned in the standard features or isn’t in the revision guide, get in touch with us to go over it in more detail.

Why does the revision process take so long?

The revisions process can be short and simple, or a much longer and complicated process – it really comes down to you working with us on this.

If there are only minor changes to be made these can be done in a matter of hours and returned to you to check. As soon as you let us know it’s good to go (i.e. approving the map) we work on getting any items you have ordered ready for the printers.

As standard, we have any revisions to the map back to you within 48 hours of receiving instruction for the changes.

We will always try to catch up with you to see how you are going and if we can offer any assistance should there be delays, but when it comes down to it, sometimes things happen on farm and the job gets delayed.

We can’t approve the map without your say so, so it will be sitting in the system until we get that verbal/written confirmation that there are no more changes to be made.

How long until I will receive my printed versions?

If at the stage of approving your map you have not yet ordered any items to be printed but would like to, this can add extra time as we organise those orders for you and then begin to work on the items to be printed. For example, a map pad takes less time to get ready than a large whiteboard.

We do a full scale test print in the office to make sure everything is scaled right and looking as good as it can be before hitting the “GO” button.

The quantity and size of the items you have ordered can sometimes impact time as well. We draft the map in one size so it’s an easily accessible size to email, print and use for making revisions.

The printed options available range from A4 (standard paper) right up to a large whiteboard (1200mm x 1700mm). So, we need to create a map in our software for each size to make sure the labels can be read, and all the features are of reasonable size for your final product.

So how long until they print my products?

Depending on their workload and the number of items you have ordered, this can vary.

Typically it is sent out within one working week of them receiving the files from us, then tack on the delivery time for the items to get to you via rural courier.

We will send you an email to confirm when the item has been sent to the printers to provide you with the tracking numbers for these packages to confirm they have been dispatched.

If you think things are taking a bit too long, or haven’t received your tracking number when you think you should have – just get in contact with us and we will check on its progress for you and let you know what’s happening with it.

How do I receive my printed products?

These will be couriered out to the physical farm address (unless otherwise stated). We will send the tracking numbers for that courier service to you so you can keep an eye on your order. From there, it’s just waiting until it turns up!

As you already know, rural deliveries can take an extra day or two, especially in more remote areas.

All items are wrapped up to be protected from any minor knocks and bouncing about in transport.

Why am I being billed? I haven’t received my map yet!

The billing is an automated process and occurs when we issue the draft to you, so you will have the draft version available at the time you are charged.

This is included in the terms and conditions when accepting your quote.

Due to the highest expense being the aerial capture, survey and initial processing and drafting time – we bill on draft issue of the job.

Why is my invoice more (or less) than my quote?

We initially price based on total area and number of paddocks (effective areas) for your region.

For example, if you requested a quote for 93ha and 40 paddocks, but now that it has been drafted it is actually 95ha and 43 paddocks, this will increase the price by a tiny bit. This also works in reverse, so if it’s actually 91ha and only 38 paddocks, your invoice will reduce from the quoted amount.

How do I read my farm map

Here’s a handy guide we’ve made. If you need any other help, feel free to get in touch, we will be more than happy to answer your questions.

How to read your farm map