GFM Network News


Cabbage seedpod weevil.

Prairie Pest Monitoring Network launches website

The new website predicts insect risks, monitors insect populations and offers information on scouting, chemical controls and more

The Prairie Pest Monitoring Network (PPMN) launched a new website last July at Prairiepest.ca. The PPMN is a Prairie-wide insect pest monitoring group that provides valuable information, predicts insect risks, monitors insect populations and offers information to growers and agronomists to help them scout for pests, time their scouting activities, and make decisions about using […] Read more

The nymph (juvenile) stage of 
the twice-stabbed stink bug.

New and notable Prairie crop pest insects

Haven’t heard of canola flower midge? Can’t identify those RED BUGS showing up in your fields? Didn’t know alfalfa weevil populations are developing insecticide resistance? Everything you need to know about new insect threats

Most Prairie farmers know more than they might want to about common crop pests like grasshoppers, cutworms and flea beetles. However, nature likes to throw curveballs, and pests are no exception. Here’s what you need to know about several new-to-you pests currently catching Prairie farmers by surprise. Alfalfa weevil While alfalfa weevils are familiar to […] Read more


The red turnip beetle is a pest that feeds on cruciferous crops such as canola or mustard.

Separating the good insects from the bad

These two insects look similar, but only one is beneficial in your fields


Throughout the growing season growers are tasked with the need to tell the difference between many “good” and “bad” things in the field. Sometimes it is hard to quickly tell the difference. Knowing the difference between things in the field is critical to determine if, when, and how to treat. Take for example the red […] Read more

This photo shows just three of the several different species of wireworm thriving on the Prairies.

Wily wireworm remains a mystery

Lack of effective control allows pest to flourish

Dallas Leduc says he hasn’t noticed any particular yield losses he can blame on wireworm damage in crops on his southern Saskatchewan, grain, oilseed and pulse crop operation, but then for many years they’ve also made a point of using recommended seed treatments as well. “The pest is out there and we may have the […] 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 […] Read more

The usual suspects are back this year, and they’re looking to take a bite out of your yields: grasshoppers, bertha armyworm, and cabbage seedpod weevil.

Three crop pests to watch for in Alberta in 2019

Grasshoppers, bertha armyworms and cabbage seedpod weevil

Each winter, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry entomologist Scott Meers and Alberta Agriculture and Forestry insect research technologist Shelley Barkley host #ABbugchat on Twitter, drawing the attention of growers across the province. This year, the pair released forecast maps for three pests: grasshopper, bertha armyworm and cabbage seedpod weevil. Here’s what you missed. Grasshoppers The forecast […] Read more



Identifying those tough-to-ID weeds

Some hard-to-control weeds look 
a lot like less invasive weeds

In the spring when weeds seem to be popping up by the minute, knowing exactly what you have in the field will help you determine the best course of action. But some weed species and their doppelgangers are tough to tell apart. Clark Brenzil, Saskatchewan’s provincial weed specialist, outlines some of the trickier species and […] Read more


The two-striped grasshopper is a pest. If you have to spray, spray early, since juveniles are easy to kill. But wait until the hatch is finished.

Managing grasshopper outbreaks

Provincial forecast maps show mixed levels of grasshopper risks

Grasshopper forecasts, based on last summer’s population counts, weather data and recent trends, are now available in all three Prairie provinces for 2019. Alberta Agriculture and Forestry entomologist Scott Meers warns that a dry spring could lead to major risk of grasshopper outbreaks in 2019. In southern Alberta, consecutive dry summers have resulted in an increase in grasshopper […] Read more

Good news ahead for wireworm control

New chemical control options are in the works, and should be released in coming years

Haley Catton, research scientist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada at the Lethbridge research station, spoke to farmers about wireworm at Alberta’s FarmTech conference in Edmonton in January. The wireworms that feed on seed and seedlings underneath the ground, Catton said, are the larvae of click beetles. “It’s not a worm at all, actually.” These insects […] Read more