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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 3, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta Tuesday, September 3, LETHBRIDGE HERALD Research Station report: Insects and alfalfa problem complex By Dr. A. M. HARPER Entomologist In Southern Alberta, most of the pests of alfalfa are being controlled without insecticides. At present we are not sure this can be continued. Alfalfa fields support a large complex of insects; some are pests or potential pests while others are beneficial. At the Lethbridge Research Station, we have been studying the insects that make up the complex. We have found some of the factors responsible for the balance between the pests and the beneficial insects. As a result, we can now suggest alternate manage- ment practices to the use of insecticides for control of some pests. In some years, fanners have had to spray for pea aphids. Our studies, however, show that usually these aphids are kept at low levels by predators, parasites, diseases, and good management prac- tices. The alfalfa weevil is pre- sent in alfalfa throughtout Southern Alberta but it has reached high levels only near Lethbridge. A minute insect that parasitizes the weevil appears to be a natural controlling factor. Cutting the crop in the ear- ly bloom stage is usually all that is needed to control the weevils. This practice also produces the highest quality of alfalfa hay. Plant bugs are present in every alfalfa field and can seriously reduce seed yield. Adelphocorid bugs lay eggs that overwinter in alfalfa stems. These bugs can be almost eliminated by burning the alfalfa stub- ble and debris early in spring. Lygus bugs overwinter as adults in debris and wasteland near alfalfa fields and lay their eggs in the growing alfalfa in spring. Therefore, out- breaks cannot be controll- ed by burning and an insec- ticide may have to be used. Several species of thrips are found in alfalfa. We have found tremendous numbers of thrips in fields that had been sprayed with insecticide. The insecticide apparently destroyed the beneficial insects and allowed the thrips to increase unchecked. Other pests include the alfalfa looper and the alfalfa caterpillar. At present, neither seriously damages alfalfa in Southern Alberta. We believe that they are ROYAL WINTER FAIR TORONTO CN Maple Leaf Escorted Tour LEAVE EDMONTON 12th Hovimbtr 1974 RETURN EDMONTON 23rd November 1974 TOUR INCLUDES Return rail transportation and roomette including meals on train, transfers in Toronto. 7 nights (Double basis) Westbury Hotel Toronto, get acquainted breakfast in Toronto daily entry to Royal Winter Fair, reserved seat at the Royal Horse Show, sightseeing tour of Metro Toronto, bus tour to Niagara Falls, ticket for N.H.L. hockey game (pending availability) TOUR COST FROM CALGARY Book now with A.M.A. TRAVEL AGENCY Reservation secured by per person deposit Contact: A.M.A. TRAVEL AGENCY 608-Sth Ave. South Phone 328-7921 or 328-1181 Ample Free Parking Rear of Building Office open Monday thru Friday to S pjn. Saturday JO lo 1230 pjn. controlled by parasites. Grasshoppers on occasions cause severe damage in alfalfa and may require control with insecticides. The objective of our research is to obtain infor- mation that will permit high quality alfalfa hay and seed to continue to be grown with minimal use of insecticides. STAVELY AUCTION MARKET Cattle Sales Start at a.m. EVERY WEDNESDAY Call Bob McNain-Myr. Phone 228-3777 CATTLE Local and Eastern Buyers always present Auctioneer FRANK MclNENLY Calf Sale Every Friday Starting Staveiy October 4th thru November Yearling Sept 11th Alberta Phone 543-3310 They're Not Free But Darn Close To It 3i8 engine. Sand 4 transmission WAS 1973HfTERMATWHttiraVEUll All New 1974 Light Duty Units In Stock IHC 47 BALER WAS IHC 37 BALER WAS sou.............................. now' VERSATILE NO. 43 COMBINE WAS eao...........HOW MASSEY HARRIS 90 SPECIAL COMBINE WAS teso.... SUND PICKUP WAS 49 SALES SERVICE CENTRE 304 Stafford Drive, Lethbridge Phone 327-3125 ;