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Pulse Pest Surveys for 2016

Don’t be alarmed if you see someone scouting your pulse field this summer. The Saskatchewan Pulse Growers in collaboration with University of Saskatchewan, Ministry of Agriculture and Agriculture and AgriFood Canada (AAFC) have initiated a number of pest surveys this summer for pulse crops. Field surveys are important for monitoring pest pressure and identifying new pests before they become a widespread problem.

The largest and most encompassing field survey starting in 2016 is the Root Rot survey which focuses on identification and incidence of the various root rot pathogens (Aphanomyces, Fusarium species, Phythium and Rhizoctonia) in peas and lentil crops across Saskatchewan. Surveys are to be conducted as the crops come into flower. The surveyors will largely consist of Regional Crop Specialists with the Ministry of Agriculture and AAFC research staff who will target one field at random in each of the 150 RMs selected. Crops will be assessed for the presence of root rot symptoms and samples will be taken for further analysis. These samples will be shipped to AAFC Lethbridge for visual root rot ratings and DNA analysis.

A faba bean disease survey will also be conducted in conjunction with a faba bean insect pest survey in mid August. Twenty fields will be selected across the faba bean growing region in Saskatchewan. The disease survey will focus on chocolate spot (Botrytis), Ascochyta and Alternaria. The insect survey will target lygus bugs but will also consider the prevalence of other pests such as blister beetles, aphids and grasshoppers. These surveys will be conducted by Saskatchewan Crop Insurance, Crop Development Centre and Saskatchewan Pulse Growers. Samples will be collected and photos of disease symptoms taken.

As lentil acres have increased dramatically, the lentil disease survey will also be expanded outside of the southwest and west central regions of the province. Ministry of Agriculture Provincial Plant Disease Specialist along with Regional Crop Specialists will be out scouting fields in July looking for symptoms.

Results from these pulse pest surveys are expected to be available this fall/winter.

If you are interested in having your lentil, pea or faba bean field included in these surveys please contact your local Regional Crop Specialist or Brian Olson at 306-774-5643.

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