GFM Network News


This forecast map is from the July 9 weekly update from the Prairie Pest Monitoring Network. Producers can get the weekly update by signing up at www.prairiepest.ca.

New user-friendly website for Prairie pest network

The Prairie Pest Monitoring Network has a new user-friendly website. The website, prairiepest.ca, has the features that were part of its long-running blog, such as risk maps, insect monitoring protocols, weekly updates, and insect of the week features. “The new site expands the functionality of the previous PPMN blog,” said network co-chair Jennifer Otani, a […] Read more

A stem infected by root rot shows signs of shredding, shattering and the development of a sclerotial body. The central cavity (pith tissue) has been destroyed, which is characteristic of stem rot.

A mix of pests and diseases on the roster for #crop2020

Wheat midge, wheat stem sawfly, net blotch and other things to look out for

There are several diseases and pests farmers might want to keep an eye out for this growing season. “It’s kind of a hodgepodge this year,” said Jeremy Boychyn, agronomy research extension specialist with Alberta Barley and Alberta Wheat. The southern part of the province has had consistent issues with grasshoppers because it has been so […] Read more


Diamondback moths typically arrive in early spring after being carried by wind currents from the U.S. or even northern Mexico. Their larvae will feed on canola and mustard.

Crop pest survey tools up and running

The Alberta Insect Pest Monitoring Network has “live feed maps” up and running for the province. The maps show results from traps around the province set up and overseen by co-operator farmers. As co-operators post results from the traps, they are posted immediately to the map. The five insects covered by these maps are bertha […] Read more

Pea leaf weevil numbers have been rising for several years. To track the expansion, provincial agriculture officials are conducting surveys across the province.

Producers needed for pea leaf weevil survey

Pest has been growing in numbers but surveying the damage they cause is challenging

Provincial agriculture staff are looking for producers willing to have their fields surveyed for damage from pea leaf weevil feeding in late May and early June. “If you are a producer who is planting peas in 2020 or an agronomist who has clients with pea fields, we would like the opportunity to visit your field,” […] Read more


Boyd Mori.

New insect expert introduces himself and advises on key pests for 2020

Cabbage seed pod weevils, bertha army worms and pea leaf weevils the insects to watch for in 2020

The province has gained one new entomologist but has lost its best-known bug specialist. Boyd Mori, a new assistant professor in the University of Alberta’s agriculture department, paid tribute to provincial insect management specialist Scott Meers in his presentation at FarmTech — and urged his audience to lobby the government for a replacement. “Scott Meers […] Read more

Nine pests to watch for if you’re growing flax

Dr. James Tansey, Saskatchewan Agriculture’s insect specialist, reminded farmers at a Saskatchewan Agriculture conference in Weyburn, Sask., that “plants are not a passive part of the environment.” Flax produces poison in the form of cyanogenic glycoside (cyanide) that is toxic to several insects. However, your flax crop may still need some help protecting itself from[...]
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Bertha armyworm.

Keep watch for army worms in fields

The province’s extensive network of bertha army worm traps isn’t sounding any alarm bells yet, but producers should keep watch, says insect management specialist Scott Meers. Results from the traps are posted on the Alberta Agriculture website. If the cumulative count reaches 300 moths, Meers strongly recommends scouting starting in late July and progress through[...]
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Five insect pests for Manitoba farmers to watch

Cutworms, grasshoppers, flea beetles and bertha armyworm are all on top of the watch list for 2019, as numbers were higher in 2018. All four overwinter well in Manitoba provided there’s enough insulation for them.


Provincial pest specialist Scott Meers scouting for wheat midge. That pest isn’t expected to be a major
problem this year — bertha army worm, grasshoppers, and wheat stem sawfly are Meers’ top threats.

There’s a time of year when it pays to go looking for a fight

To combat the hordes of bad guys looking for a free meal, you need to plan your attack

Looking for trouble? You should be when it comes to insects that might be a threat to your crops. The “big three” this year are bertha army worm, grasshoppers, and wheat stem sawfly, says provincial pest specialist Scott Meers. But it depends where you farm, so Meers recommends you bookmark the website of the Alberta[...]
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The three types of flea beetles: crucifer, hop and striped. Crucifers have been dominant so far but more stripes have been seen in recent years.

Flea beetles: more species, more territory

Control options include seed treatment, seeding early and a higher seeding rate

They have been a voracious pest in canola for many years, but their pattern of infestation is changing. “Flea beetles can be a huge economic problem; pervasive and unpredictable,” Jennifer Otani, a pest management biologist at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Beaverlodge said during a session at FarmTech. Adult flea beetles can move in and out[...]
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