GFM Network News


Fowl play in the free-range poultry industry

The dire perils of free-range environments, chickens may be happier indoors, warm and among friends

It seems that the general public has a very distorted view of farming practices, which is helped by the inability or reluctance of the North American farming community to deliver the real facts. Many in the urban general public seem to have fond visions of laying hens or broiler chickens tiptoeing through the green, grassy […] Read more

The barren patches in Trent’s canola field were much larger than I expected. He was convinced they were the work of cutworms.

Crop advisor casebook: Did cutworms carve off these 80 acres of canola?

A Crop Advisor's Solution from the August 25, 2020 issue of Grainews

Trent is a grain farmer in Wroxton, Sask., who called me last year in early July to tell me about an unusual problem — the canola in one of his fields was, quite literally, starting to disappear. “I’m missing a whole bunch of plants here,” he said. “Last week the crop looked great, and this […] Read more


The pea crop was at the R4 stage — most of the pods on the plants were done filling but hadn’t started to ripen yet. There were numerous patches of damaged plants spread randomly around the field, the largest were on the headlands.

Crop advisor casebook: Why are these pea pods scratched and shredded open?

A Crop Advisor's Solution from the March 24, 2020 issue of Grainews

Brian is a grain farmer who also runs a successful crop input and agronomy business near Humboldt, Sask. He regularly calls or drops by my office with questions or ideas, so I wasn’t surprised when Brian came in to see me late last July. After shaking my hand, Brian got right down to business, pulling […] Read more

Those pesky pigeons

Turn your on-farm nuisance into a new hobby for the New Year

Are there any farmsteads on the Canadian Prairies that do not have a flock of circling pigeons looking for spoiled grain? Believe it or not, pigeons were the first birds to be domesticated many thousands of years ago. Worldwide, countless millions of pigeons are kept for racing, ornamentation, fun and food. There are some 310 […] Read more


A large male wild boar — which can top 600 pounds — in a rare daytime photo. The animals tend to be nocturnal.

A boaring threat to our meat production

The growing population of wild boar on the prairies threatens livestock production


People who say they have never seen wild boar should watch the ditches at dusk from Florida to Dawson Creek. I have seen them at both locations and many places in between, and more than once avoided a disastrous collision with a wild boar. Wild boar, wild swine, Sas scrofa, Eurasian wild pig or just […] Read more

Coyotes offer a credible rodent control service every day of the year.

Please do not shoot those coyotes

One man’s poison is another man’s meal. Or at least a meal for that pesky coyote


Prairie people frequently get together to shoot coyotes, often with the support of local farmers. I’m not against disposing of problem wildlife, but I fail to see any benefits from shooting coyotes. Coyotes are a major reason why we are not overrun by rabbits, jackrabbits, voles, mice, pocket gophers, rats and ground squirrels. If we […] Read more


Kildeer: This killdeer set up a nest among the asparagus. Those few plants were not picked and several eggs were successfully hatched. When we got too close the “broken wing” trick was played and photos of it were also possible.

PHOTOS: Les Henry: Wildlife on my Blackstrap farm

Almost all of my encounters with wildlife have been positive and occasionally photos have been possible. This is what I’ve learned

For 25 years I have owned land just a half hour drive south of Saskatoon, just east of Blackstrap Lake. In that time, I have had many wildlife encounters and observed several cycles of Mother Nature and her creatures. Wildlife conservation Some city slickers like to think farmers are bent on destruction of Mother Nature. […] Read more

A whitetail doe with her fawn approach a protective fence seeking an opportunity to nibble at something.

One man’s experience with destructive deer

Ted has a recipe to help discourage them from damaging trees and shrubs

As I write this, September’s been a really wet one so far here in my part of Manitoba and elsewhere too, according to news reports. Seems moisture began falling not many days after I wrote about “The Rain Dance” in a local publication. Now a few folks have said — maybe it’s time to write […] Read more


Sask. harvest reaches 82 per cent, weather, wildlife seen damaging crops

Saskatchewan Crop Report for the week ending October 15

Although wet and cool weather conditions last week continued to delay harvest in much of the province, many producers are back in the field or will be soon. Eighty-two per cent of the crop is now in the bin, according to Saskatchewan Agriculture’s weekly Crop Report, up from 78 per cent last week but behind […] Read more

Gabi Uelinger holds six of the required native plants for a 
Q2 meadow.

Farming for the insects and birds

Government programs provide funds for Swiss farmers who follow new mowing rules

Schleitheim, Switzerland: All around me farmers are mowing. From June 15th onwards farmers are allowed to cut meadows and hayfields qualifying for Q2 government subsidies. The Q2 (qualitätsstufe 2) program aims to provide and protect healthy habitat for birds and insects. Non-qualifying fields are already being cut the second or even the third time. Obviously […] Read more