Agriculture and Environmental Protection Services
For weed and pest control, soil conservation and any agricultural or environmental concerns within the Municipality, please submit a form at https://crowsnest.omnigo.one/CESIReportExec/olr/main.aspx.
Please call the Agricultural Fieldman to access free information, booklets, brochures, handouts and reserve books on agricultural and environmental materials (weeds, pests, water wells, re-vegetation, etc). The Agricultural Fieldman can be contacted at 403-562-8600 or 403-563-8658.
Together the Agricultural Service Board, Agricultural Fieldman and other staff make up the Agricultural and Environmental Protection Services Department whose responsibilities include the enforcement and administration of the following statutes: Agricultural Service Board Act, Weed Control Act, Soil Conservation Act, and Agricultural Pests Act.
2019 Crowsnest Pass Agriculture & Environmental Protection Services Program History & Continuity
2018 Agricultural Situational Statement for the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass
Links to legislation
Agricultural Services Board Act
Weed Control Act
Weed Control Act Regulations with Prohibited Noxious & Noxious Weed Lists
Soil Conservation Act
Soil Conservation Regulations
Agricultural Pests Act
Agricultural Pests Regulations
Alberta Dutch Elm Disease Awareness Week
JUNE 22 – 28
At present, Alberta has the largest Dutch Elm Disease-free American elm stand in the world, and it is important to protect this valuable resource. The Society to Prevent Dutch Elm Disease (STOPDED) is asking for your assistance to save our beautiful elm trees from this deadly disease. Once an elm is infected with DED there is no cure, and it must be removed and destroyed immediately.
Dutch Elm Disease (DED) is a preventable disease caused by a fungus that clogs the elm tree's water conducting system, causing the tree to die. The fungus is primarily spread from one elm tree to another by three species of beetles, the smaller European, the native and the banded elm bark beetle. The beetles are attracted to weak and dying trees, which serve as breeding sites for the beetles. Once the beetles have pupated and turned into adults they leave the brood gallery and fly to healthy elms to feed, thus transporting the fungus on their bodies from one tree to the next.
Leaves on a DED-infected elm will wilt or droop, curl and become brown. This appears in mid-June to mid-July. Leaves on trees infected later in the season usually turn yellow and drop prematurely. Leaf symptoms are accompanied by brown staining under the bark.
What can you do?
- Be aware of the Alberta elm pruning ban between April 1 and September 30. The beetles are most active at this time and can be attracted to the scent of fresh tree cuts, possibly infecting a healthy elm.
- Keep your elm trees healthy and vigorous.
- Water elms well from April to mid-August. To allow the tree to harden off for the winter, watering should be stopped mid-August followed by a good soaking or two before freeze-up.
- Only between October 1 to March 31, remove dead branches and trees as they can provide beetle habitat.
- Dispose of all elm wood immediately by burning, burying or chipping.
- Report all suspect trees to the DED Hotline at 1-877-837-ELMS.
What you shouldn’t do!
- Do not transport or store elm firewood at any time.
- Do not transport elm firewood into Alberta! Firewood is confiscated at all the Alberta-Montana border crossings.
- Do not prune elms between April 1 to September 30.
DED and the beetles are declared pests under the AB Agricultural Pests Act and the DED prevention/control measures are enforceable under this act.
To report a DED suspect elm tree or for more information, call the STOPDED hotline at 1-877-837-ELMS or check out the web site at www.stopded.org.
Our elms are a treasure that we cannot afford to lose. Check out the https://open.alberta.ca/dataset/province-wide-elm-tree-inventory-update-2017
We must stay vigilant to keep our elms healthy.
Notice of Weed Control Program
Eradication or control of invasive species, such as prohibited noxious and noxious weeds, is critical to the long-term prosperity of our natural landscape. As designated by the Alberta Weed Control Act, the Municipality will be conducting vegetation management via an Integrated Vegetation Management Program where one of our control methods is by chemical means. Commencing on May 15 until October 31, Municipal contract sprayers will be conducting herbicide applications (weather permitting). Alternative municipal vegetation management will also be conducted by cultural, mechanical, or biological control methods.
Due diligence with regards to public safety and environmental impact will be followed. Risk is minimal though it is recommended staying off treated sprayed areas for 24 hours following the application time/date which can be found on signs posted at the site.
Identification of these specific weeds can be found online at: Alberta Weed Control Act, Regulations.
Invasive weed species photos and information can also be obtained through Crowsnest Pass Protective Services, Agricultural & Environmental department. Our office is located at the Blairmore Fire Station, 2141 - 127 Street, call for an appointment, 403-562-8658 or 403-562-8600.
Municipal Vegetation Management-Inspections
Municipal Weed Inspectors will be inspecting private properties, acreages and industrial sites for prohibited noxious and noxious weeds. The Municipality asks landowners to remove invasive weeds to prevent further spread.
What you can do:
- Remove prohibited noxious and noxious weeds from your yard or property (be sure to remove the entire plant and roots if possible, careful not to dislodge possible seeds).
- Ask for assistance to help identify weed species (Ag & Environmental Department).
- Let your neighbors know if you find a prohibited noxious or noxious weed on your property as it may have spread.
- Dispose of the weeds by double bagging the plant and placing it in your regular garbage disposal. DO NOT COMPOST as seeds will spread in new soil.
- When selecting plants for your yard, check with your Ag & Environmental Department or local greenhouse as they can help with your selection.
- Volunteer for community weed pulling or native planting events and learn more about vegetation management in the Crowsnest Pass (dates to follow).
Eradication or control of invasive species is critical to the long-term prosperity of our natural landscape.
Our Agricultural and Environmental department is always here to help you with any questions you may have.
Invasive weed species photos and information can also be obtained through Crowsnest Pass Protective Services, Agricultural & Environmental department, or online at https://abinvasives.ca/
Call to set up an appointment. Our office is located at the Blairmore Fire Station, 2141 - 127 Street, call for an appointment, 403-562-8658 or 403-562-8600.
Early Detection Rapid Response
Spread the Word not the Weed!
Invasive Species - Click image for Fact Sheets
Spread of weeds prohibited 4(1)
Subject to the regulations, a person shall not use or move anything that, if used or moved, might spread a noxious weed or prohibited noxious weed.
Offence and penalty 28
A person who contravenes this Act is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine of not more than $5000 or, in the case of failure to comply with a Minister’s notice, a fine of not more than $1000 for each day the offence continues.
(See Weed Control Act)
Please refer to the Alberta Pest Control Act and Regulations for a list of pest and nuisance animals.
Pest Management Links
Biology & Control of Skunks: Skunk traps are available for rent from the Agricultural Fieldman. $100 deposit (cash or cheque which will be returned once the trap has been returned in the same condition that it was borrowed) and a $10 rental fee.
Control of Porcupine damage
Mice and their control
An Improved Magpie Trap
Protecting Livestock from Predation with Electric Fences
Alberta is 1 of 3 places on earth that is free from established rat populations (others locations being the North and South Pole). Some native animals to the Crowsnest Pass have been mistaken for rats so it is important to know the differences between invasive Norway and Roof rats compared to native Pack rats/Wood rats, or Muskrats. The pictures below will help you to identify each species of invasive or native rats. All Norway or Roof rat sightings MUST be reported to the Agriculture & Environmental Services Department immediately in order to prevent their spread.
Roof Rat, Muskrat, Packrat & Pocket Gopher Comparison Sketches
Norway Rat Sketch
Rat Control in Alberta
History of Rat Control in Alberta
Gophers and Ground Squirrels
The Crowsnest Pass is situated in the foothills and Rocky Mountains of Alberta. This means the Columbian Ground Squirrel and the Northern Pocket Gopher are the main species of ground squirrels and gophers present in the Crowsnest Pass. The Richardson Ground Squirrel lives in the prairies and looks different from the Columbian Ground Squirrel. Much of the literature available on gopher control focuses on Richardson’s Ground Squirrels and not Columbian Ground Squirrels. The same control methods are used to control both species of ground squirrels. Pocket Gophers require another tactic and trap because they live under the ground and only surface at night for air to avoid their predators.
Control of Pocket Gophers and Ground Squirrels
Richardson’s Ground Squirrels
Pocket Gopher Control Information
Alberta Agriculture Insect Monitoring Program
Alberta Agriculture Insect Monitoring Program
For more information, please visit https://www.agric.gov.ab.ca/app21/infopage?cat1=Diseases%2FInsects%2F%20Pests
Plants and Soil Conservation
Lyons Creek Healthy Riparian Area
Please refer to the Soil Conservation Act and Regulations for more information.
The Alberta Native Plant Council's list of Native Plant Sources to buy native seeds or plants that are not invasive or weeds.
50 Best Plants for Prairie Urban Gardens in Southern Alberta
Agricultural Soil Compaction Causes and Management
2019 Crowsnest Pass Native Plant Species
Riparian Restoration at Flumerfelt Park
In the 2016 season the Agriculture and Environmental Services Department worked on a number of riparian restoration projects. A native plant and willow staking project was completed north of Frank on Gold Creek adjacent to Benga property. As well, project planning was completed for future riparian restoration of Gold Creek at the confluence of Crowsnest River for completion in 2017. Willow staking was also performed on P. Burns Creek alongside the riparian restoration project completed in 2015, and at the McGillivray Creek confluence with Crowsnest River. A total of 478 bags of weeds weighing a total of 2710 kg (5975 lbs) were pulled by our department this season and taken to the landfill. These weeds were from various areas within the Municipality including along Crowsnest Lake, Crowsnest River, Drum Creek, Gold Creek, Lyons Creek, McGillivray Creek, Nez Pearce Creek and P. Burns Creek.
Riparian Area Health Brochure
Riparian Area Health Newsletter
For more information on riparian restoration please visit the links below:
Crowsnest Conservation Society
Alberta Conservation Association
Cows and Fish Alberta Riparian Management Society
Oldman Watershed Council
Government of Alberta Water for Life
Horse Industry Association of Alberta
The Horse Industry Association of Alberta (HIAA) was informally established in 1982 to act as an organizing body for the Horse Breeders & Owners Conference. Until this time, the conference had been hosted by the University of Calgary Continuing Education Department under the direction of Ron Cole. With Ron's retirement, the conference was in danger of discontinuing, so a dedicated group took it on and moved it to its current location in Red Deer. By 1991, the growth of the conference necessitated the incorporation of the Horse Industry Association of Alberta under the Alberta Society's Act as a non-profit organization.
For details and current events and workshops, please visit http://www.albertahorseindustry.ca/
Canadian Agricultural Partnership