A wide range of insects affect cultivated crops and rangeland grasses throughout Alberta.
The Alberta Insect Pest Monitoring Network provides timely, accurate insect management information and resources to support Alberta’s agricultural industry. The network partners with Agricultural Fieldmen, Applied Research Associations, researchers, agronomists, producers and government staff to monitor and survey for crop insect pests.
Crop insect pests
In addition to crop diseases, invasive weeds and vertebrate pests, insect pest species can cause major crop losses. Some have been declared provincially or federally regulated pests, as they pose a threat to Alberta’s environment, economy and society. All major crop insect pests in Alberta require active monitoring, surveying and forecasting.
These insect pest species can cause major crop and ornamental plant loss. While few are known to have established in Alberta, have been detected in other Canadian provinces. But it’s still important to familiarize yourself with these potential invasive insects and watch for them.
|Crop invasive species||Ornamental invasive species|
|Swede Midge (Canada)||Asian Longhorned Beetle (Canada)|
|Bronzed Blossom Pollen Beetle (Canada)||Emerald Ash Borer (Canada)|
|Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (Canada)||Elm Bark Beetle (Dutch Elm Disease) (Alberta)|
|Japanese Beetle (Canada)||Redneck Long-horned Beetle (US only)|
|Lesser Grain Borer (Alberta)||Red Lily Beetle (Alberta)|
|Western Bean Cutworm (Canada) (PDF, 3.1 MB)|
Greenhouse crop production brings its own challenges in terms of controlling pests, and primarily involves sanitization and biological control.
Surveys and maps
Insects that cause major crop losses in the province are actively monitored, surveyed and predicted by the Alberta Insect Pest Monitoring Network.
A number of insects are natural enemies of harmful crop pests. The following resources provide information on how beneficial insects can help protect your crops, and how you can encourage them to thrive.
- Natural Enemies of Field Crop Insect Pests in Alberta
- Biological control of weeds on the prairies
- Maximising the Value of Beneficial Insects on the Farm: Predator and Parasitoids (PDF, 709 KB)
- Western Grain Research Foundation: Field Heroes
- Field Crop and Forage Pests and their Natural Enemies in Western Canada (PDF, 6.7 MB)
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