GFM Network News


A healthy wheat head at left and one with severe symptoms of fusarium head blight at right. (Keith Weller photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

Alberta deregulates fusarium

Crop disease comes off province's 'zero tolerance' list

Alberta is moving to keep fusarium in check by means other than the “zero tolerance” policy it has in effect on agricultural pests such as rats, rabies and clubroot. Agriculture Minister Devin Dreeshen announced a ministerial order Wednesday to remove Fusarium graminearum from the list of pests covered by the Pest and Nuisance Control Regulation, […] Read more



An influx of gophers is ripping up the land and making holes at Ian Murray’s place near Acme.

It’s not your imagination — there are more gophers this year

Sadly, there aren’t many control methods that can reduce the large gopher population

Reading Time: 3 minutes If you think you’ve got more gophers than usual, you’re probably right. The gopher problem is particularly bad this year, particularly in central and east-central Alberta. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” said Ian Murray, a cattle rancher who lives near Acme. “It’s absolutely astounding.” Last year, the gophers flourished near Murray’s canola fields and […] Read more

New field guide for Prairie pests in Western Canada

New field guide for Prairie pests in Western Canada

Reading Time: < 1 minute Agriculture Canada has a new 152-page full-colour illustrated field guide for managing more than 90 crop and forage pests in Western Canada. Along with diagnostic information for pest species, the guide also helps to identify over 30 natural enemies that prey on or parasitize these pests. The book includes identification characteristics, life cycle, damage or […] Read more


Rat peeking out of hole in a tree

New hotline for reporting rats

Province says even calls left after hours 
or on weekends will 
be responded to 
within 24 hours


Reading Time: < 1 minute Albertans now have a new way to report rat sightings. “Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development has a new easily remembered phone number, 310-RATS (7287), for all Albertans to report possible rat sightings,” said rat inspector Bruce Hamblin. “It’s not a replacement for the current system of reporting rats, but it is an addition to it.” […] Read more

Ladybugs are a beneficial insect as they are voracious eaters of aphids.

A better way to beat your bug troubles

Integrated pest management allows beneficial bugs to prosper

Reading Time: 2 minutes Prevention — not eradication — is the trick to managing pest outbreaks in crops, says a B.C. government entomologist. “In integrated pest management, pest suppression is truly the goal,” Tracey Hueppelsheuser said at a workshop in late July. “The end goal is to limit pest outbreaks and impacts — not completely remove them, but limit […] Read more