Pests

Pest Management
Red Deer County works with landowners, industry, and businesses to manage and control pests throughout the County. The County has the legislated authority to ensure that pests do not negatively impact agricultural production.

Red Deer County participates in several provincial initiatives to monitor and control pest levels within the County. Pests that are monitored within Red Deer County include: Clubroot, Fusarium, Rats, Bertha Armyworm, Diamond Back Moths and Grasshoppers. Guidance and resources are also available to County residents looking for information on pest identification and management. This includes tools for managing Richardson's Ground Squirrels.

To find out more about the many programs and initiatives the County does in pest management, contact Art Preachuk, Agricultural Manager, or visit Alberta Agriculture pest maps.
Clubroot 3Clubroot & Fusarium Control
Clubroot has been declared a pest under the Agricultural Pest Act of Alberta and Red Deer County has the duty of inspecting for pests and enforcing the Act. 

Agricultural staff will be inspecting canola fields again this summer and fall for the presence of clubroot disease, focusing on short canola rotations as they are most likely to develop the disease. If clubroot is confirmed by a lab analysis, a “Notice to Control Pests” will be issued on that parcel and any clubroot host crop (Canola, mustard, etc.) will not be grown for the next 4 seasons as per Red Deer County's Clubroot Policy.

Best management practices must be followed to slow down this disease before every parcel within the municipality has it. View our video on clubroot inspections.

Prevention Methods
Small changes in practices, (e.g. knocking lumps of soil off equipment, seeding on canola stubble last or even entering and exiting fields through different points) could be the difference between clubroot spreading or not. 

We all know the purposes of crop rotations; however the trends show that economics have given to stewardship and rotations in the north and central regions of Alberta have shortened to a 1 in 3 and even 1 in 2 year rotations. With shortened rotations fungus, insects and disease reproduce to destructive levels within a couple of years and 50-80% yield loss is not uncommon on fields with shortened or no crop rotations. With diseases such as clubroot, fusarium, sclerotinia and blackleg at or within our borders the best disease, insect and fungal protection is still crop rotation.

Another tool to protect ourselves against disease, fungus and insects is scouting. Canola growers are encouraged to scout their own fields for disease in season, for some informational videos please continue to the Alberta Canola Producers Commission Website. 

If you have any questions or concerns about Clubroot, call the Agriculture Services Department at 403.350.2163.
Liquid Strychnine 1Richardson's Ground Squirrel Control
Alberta farmers will once again have access to 2% Liquid Strychnine Concentrate (2% LSC) for the 2013 season. The Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) has approved the registration of 2% liquid strychnine concentrate for control of Richardson’s ground squirrels (RGS) in Alberta.

If you require 2% LSC please pre-order your product to ensure supply. Baiting Richardson Ground Squirrels is most effective in early spring when food supply is limited and before reproduction has occurred.

Liquid Strychnine Requirements


Requirements for use of 2% liquid strychnine concentrate:
  • Product can only be sold to bona fide farmers who have an infestation of Richardson’s Ground Squirrels. (Farm Fuel # required)
  • The farmer must have an “economically significant” population of RGS as defined by Agriculture and Rural Development, which is; 1 hole per 4 strides walking or 20% crop damage in a 100 metre strip adjacent to a pasture – or road allowance
  • Farmers must sign a LSC agreement, and will be limited to 2 cases per person per purchase
Producers are required to attend a short training session on 2% liquid strychnine. This training will be completed in conjunction with product distribution on Friday mornings from 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM. Producers are required to phone the Agriculture Department at the County to pre-order their Strychnine to ensure supply.
  • 1 case (24 bottles) of strychnine should treat approximately 1,600 holes
  • Strychnine will only be sold in multiples of 6 bottles (1/4 case), up to a maximum of 2 cases per farmer per pick-up
To order, or if you have any questions please phone Agriculture Services at 403.350.2163.

Aquatic Invasive Pests: Plants & Animals


Alberta's rivers and lakes support a variety of fish populations and fishing opportunities. These systems are being threatened by the introduction of aquatic invasive species. These invaders come from outside Alberta or are transferred between water bodies within Alberta. They can transform entire ecosystems by outcompeting native species, posing a major threat to Alberta's biodiversity. View our information handout.

How Lake & River Users Spread Invaders


  • Dirty and wet gear: Boaters and fishers can unknowingly transport aquatic invaders when their gear and their boats have not been properly cleaned and dried.
  • Illegal live transfer: The movement of any live fish between water bodies is illegal.
  • Use of bait: Although the use of live bait is illegal in Alberta, even dead bait may carry unwanted species, such as parasites or diseases.

What You Can Do


  • Report sightings of suspected invasive species to your local Fish and Wildlife office. Call 1.855.336.BOAT (2626), 24/7.
  • Check your equipment at the dock for debris, plants or mud.
  • Clean your equipment; remove any plants, mud or debris before leaving the access area or dock. Cleaning your gear with a 2% bleach solution when you get home is recommended.
  • Dry your gear completely between trips. Drain all the water from your boat and equipment (coolers, live wells, bilge, buckets) before departing from the dock.
  • Learn more about invasive species and inform others.
Invader Zebra Mussels

Zebra Mussels