"Crop-Dust" Pilots Are A Key Factor To Local Farming

Pilots in West Texas make it their job to fight and spray off boll worms

LUBBOCK, TX - With recent rain, “Crop-Dust” pilots across the South Plains have been playing catchup, spending up to 15 hours a day in the sky.
“Were fairly busy. We've had a lot of rain which has been good. It’s always nice when we get rain because it helps the farmers out and helps our business out,” Raj Horan, owner and pilot of Horan Spraying said.
Horan said his job is necessary for farming in West Texas to spray off boll worms.
“Ninety percent of our business is cotton but we also have a lot of corn but it's probably 90  percent cotton. It’s a benefit for the farmer because we can get to the fields a whole lot quicker,” Horan said.
“The boll worms are the biggest factor for us up here. The thing is that worm will eat inside the boll, the cotton boll and it ruins the boll,” Horan said.
This is his 26th season flying and spraying crops, but Horan said there are always dangers that come with flying, no matter how skilled the pilot.
“I run through trees, high-line wires and I've had a couple motors blow up. One time over in Littlefield the motor blew up when I was trying to land it. The wheel broke off and I started going sideways and backwards and all that,” Horan said.

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