Grasshoppers plague Alberta farmlands

WATCH ABOVE: On top of dry conditions farmers are also dealing with a growing grasshopper problem. Fletcher Kent reports.

EDMONTON –  Alberta farmers dealing with extremely dry soil conditions have yet another challenge this season: grasshoppers.

Near the hamlet of MacKay, farmers say grasshoppers are wreaking havoc on their land. Farmer Ross Syme tells Global News his field was so full of the insects the other day it was moving.

“That’s the thing though, they just move to the next field. You can’t stop ’em,” says Syme.

According to Scott Meers, Alberta Agriculture insect management specialist, there have been more reports of grasshoppers than in the past few years. The insects are thriving in certain hot spots in the province. He says areas to the west of Edmonton and in the Peace River region are some of the most hard hit.

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“Grasshoppers are in the stage where they are turning into adults where they become more mobile.

“We’re going to see them on the roads and they’re going to be more visible than they have been to this point,” adds Meers.

And he says we aren’t out of the woods yet.

“What we are seeing is a province-wide build up of grasshoppers.”

One of the biggest concerns is that the dry weather and continuous hatching of grasshoppers could cause a domino effect for the next couple years.

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