GFM Network News

The Elbe River at Oberrathen, southeast of Dresden. (

Germany plans to toughen conditions for insecticide use

Berlin | Reuters — Germany plans to make it more difficult for farmers to use crop insecticides in a bid to preserve biodiversity, an environment ministry document showed. “Insect biomass has fallen by more than 75 per cent in the last 27 years in Germany,” according to the paper seen by Reuters on Wednesday, saying

Black soldier flies are held in a pen at the Enterra Feed Corporation in Langley, British Columbia.

Bugging out

Insect farms gear up to feed soaring global protein demand

Layers of squirming black soldier fly larvae fill large aluminum bins stacked 10 high in a warehouse outside of Vancouver. They are feeding on stale bread, rotting mangoes, overripe cantaloupe and squishy zucchini. But this is no garbage dump. It’s a farm. Enterra Feed, one of an emerging crop of insect growers, will process the

Aphid mummies.

Assessing whether or not to spray soybean aphids?

There’s an app for that, but farmers still need to scout and take beneficial insects that prey on soybean aphids into account

Uncertain about applying an insecticide to control soybean aphids? There’s an app for that. It’s called the Aphid Advisor and it not only takes into account the soybean aphid population, but the population of six main insects that prey on soybean aphids. “Instead of having a fixed, economic threshold like we are used to having

flea beetles

Insect numbers low, flea beetles requiring some control in canola

Manitoba Insect & Disease Update for May 31

Insect pest concerns are currently low overall. There have been some insecticide applications for cutworms on corn and soybeans in the Central Region, and on peas and lentils in the Northwest. Some species of cutworms, such as dingy cutworm, have started to turn to pupae in some field. Cutworm staging can be quite variable depending on the dominant species

Soldier fly larvae like these can convert waste food into high-protein poultry and fish feed.

Insect entrees

Insects are going to play a more important role in the human food chain, but that might not mean direct consumption

A professor emeritus at the University of Guelph says insects might be a more sustainable source of nutrition, but just how they’ll be used is up in the air. David Waltner-Toews, an epidemiologist who taught in the U of G’s Ontario Veterinary College, studied the topic for his new book, Eat the Beetles! which will

A lygus bug prepares to wreak havoc on a canola plant.

Shining a light on the creepy crawly side of agriculture

Entomologist John Gavloski is warning producers to maintain beneficial bugs found in crops

Not all bugs are made equal and entomologist John Gavloski is warning producers of “collateral damage” in their beneficial insects. “Certainly we’ve got insects that feed on the crops, but we’ve also got a lot of beneficial insects that feed on those insects that feed on the crops and when those are numerous, often the

Green lacewings are an effective biocontrol for soybean aphid in Manitoba fields.

Preserve natural habitat and enjoy free pest control

Predatory and parasitic insects can contribute to pest suppression for your crops

Pest control services provided by naturally occurring, beneficial insects save growers in the United States around US$4.5 billion per year. Add that to the just over US$3-million benefit they provide through pollination of crops, and these are pretty valuable critters to have on the farm. New research at the University of Manitoba is trying to

Fusarium head blight in canary grass.

Lygus bugs, moths present in sunflowers, keep your eye on stored grain

Manitoba Insect and Disease summary for August 10

Summary Insects: Insects of highest importance to scout for currently are Lygus bugs in canola and sunflowers, and banded sunflower moths in sunflowers. Only trace levels of soybean aphids have been found so far. There have still been no reports of high levels of larvae of bertha armyworms in Manitoba. Plant Pathogens: Various diseases continue

Alfalfa weevil levels seen high, crop scouting for diseases still needed

Manitoba Insect & Disease summary for June 29

Summary Insects: Alfalfa weevil is still at high levels in some alfalfa fields. Some alfalfa hay fields are being cut early as a result. Pea aphid levels are near or above economic threshold in some pea fields, although levels are sporadic as other fields have quite low levels. Plant pathogens: Scouting should be continued for all crop

Canola under pressure from cutworms, flea beetles

Manitoba Insect & Disease Update summary for June 1

Insects Cutworms and flea beetles on canola continue to be the insects of greatest concern. The cool, damp weather from the last few days would have slowed cutworm feeding, and the soil moisture, where not excessive, may help the plants compensate for feeding. Cutworm levels are quite variable, hard to find in some fields, more