This photo shows the click beetles and their respective wireworms, which are the beetles’ larval form. These three are all prominent pest species collected in 2017. From left, they are Hypnoidus bicolor, Selatosomus aeripennis destructor and Aeolus mellilus. S. destructor can destroy three to 10 times as many seeds as H. bicolor, and is the main wireworm pest on the Prairies.  |  Barb Glen photo

Click beetles, wireworms focus of new Alberta field study

Research on wireworms lagged when effective pesticides came into wider use in Canada. Now that those same pesticides, notably lindane, are no longer in use, wireworm research is being revived. Haley Catton, research scientist and cereal crop entomologist with Agriculture Canada in Lethbridge, is in year two of a three-year study designed to see how […] Read more

Agriculture Canada’s field guide, Cutworm Pests of Crops on the Canadian Prairies, can be found online.  |  File photo

Cutworms can be difficult to identify: look for ‘fake legs’

There are two things for Alberta farmers to remember about cutworms, says Agriculture Canada entomologist Kevin Floate. One is that Alberta Agriculture has an online cutworm reporting tool that farmers can use to enter data and see whether cutworms are a problem in a specific area. Find it by visiting www.agric.gov.ab.ca/app68/listings/cutworm/cutworm_map.jsp. The other is that […] Read more

In temperatures of 5 C to 11 C it requires 10 days of exposure for the fumigant to work. | File photo

Grain bugs lurk in Alberta bins

An Alberta cereal specialist is asking farmers to start checking their grain bins because more producers in the province are facing pest issues that they normally don’t have during this time of year. Clair Langlois with Alberta Agriculture said in a recent blog post that reports of grain bug infestation are likely a result of […] Read more


Diamondback moth larvae can cause significant crop losses.  |  File photo

Diamondback moths pressure canola growers

Diamondback moths are the big story in canola of late, says Canola Council of Canada agronomy specialist Keith Gabert. He said Aug. 4 that farmer queries about the pesky insects have dominated his voice mail in recent days, and problems have been reported from Calgary to Winnipeg. “We’re reminding (farmers) that there’s no better way […] Read more

Alfalfa weevil feeding typically occurs to leaves near the top of the plant. Damage can range from parts of leaves being eaten, to 'skeletonization' of the leaves and total defoliation. | File photo

Alfalfa weevil infestation requires immediate action

Prairie growers should be checking their alfalfa fields for alfalfa weevils as soon as possible, say forage experts in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. If weevil larvae numbers are high, the alfalfa crop should be cut immediately, weather permitting. If that’s not possible, growers should consider a pesticide application. “There are many alfalfa fields where if it’s […] Read more


Adult crucifer flea beetles like these ones are the most common species and can be managed with neonicotinoids.  |  Canola Council of Canada Photo

Growers warned to scout canola for flea beetles

Flea beetles are feeding on canola crops in some regions of the Prairies this spring, and growers are being advised to scout for the pests. Whether they take action will depend on number, level of damage and crop stage, but the type of flea beetle involved is also important. Crucifer flea beetles, which are solid […] Read more

Even with serious infestation, pea leaf weevils generally eat less than 20 percent of the foliage and the plants can survive that level of damage.  |  File photo

Pea weevil recovery requires early detection

Pea leaf weevil is munching its way through pea crops to the point where at least one farmer near Fort Macleod, Alta., is considering plowing up the stand. Hector Carcamo, an entomologist and senior researcher at Agriculture Canada in Lethbridge, advises against that. “Never plow your field (of peas) even if it looks this bad,” […] Read more

Brassicogethese aeneus, also called the pollen beetle, is a threat to canola crops.  |  Wikipedia photo

Researcher keeps watch for new canola pest

Pollen beetles cause extensive damage 
to crops in the Maritimes and Europe 
but haven’t been spotted in the west … yet

Entomologist Hector Carcamo has seen many, many insects in his career but he has yet to lay eyes on Brassicogethes aeneus, otherwise known as the pollen beetle. He doesn’t want to, either. Carcamo, a research scientist with Agriculture Canada, works in Lethbridge and a sighting of the pollen beetle in his region would mean the […] Read more


Wild boar were first imported from Asia and Europe in the late 1970s as domestic livestock. Some escaped from farms and have been able to reproduce and roam freely. They have few natural predators and are notoriously difficult to control. | File photo

Hunting licence no longer needed for wild boar in Sask.

Saskatchewan hunters may now hunt wild boar without a licence. The government has amended both the wildlife regulations and the stray animal regulations to allow feral or free-ranging wild boar to be killed. Hunters are still required to ask permission to hunt on private land and must follow proper safety precautions. Wild boar can become […] Read more

Neonicotinoids helps control crucifer flea beetles but the striped beetle is less susceptible, highlighting the need for new control methods. |  File photo

Growers face pest of different stripe

Striped flea beetles are taking over some of the territories once dominated by the crucifer flea beetle and that means farmers may have to change their control methods. Owen Olfert, a research scientist with Agriculture Canada and operator of the Prairie Pest Monitoring Network, said the species are different and must be treated as such. […] Read more