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Prairie farmers wanted for wheat survey

Prairie farmers wanted for wheat survey

The Canadian Wheat Research Coalition wants to know about usage of midge-tolerant wheat

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

An ag research body is asking Prairie farmers to participate in a survey.

The Canadian Wheat Research Coalition wants farmers in Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan to complete the Midge Tolerant Wheat Grower Survey

The 12-question survey asks farmers questions like if they planted midge-tolerant wheat in 2022, if they plan to do so again in 2023 and their level of midge pressure in 2022 compared to 2021.

Midge-tolerant wheat varieties include AAC Broadacres VB, AAC Chiffon VB and AAC Whitehead VB.

It’s estimated that based on wheat priced at $10 per bushel, producers can achieve $70 per acre in yield and grade benefits by planting midge-tolerant wheat, the Midge Tolerant Wheat Stewardship Program says.

The data collected from the survey will be used to manage the program, which the Canadian Wheat Research Coalition operates.

Some farmers could see higher populations of wheat midge in 2023 compared to previous years.

In Saskatchewan, for example, the 2023 Wheat Midge Forecast Map “shows increased numbers of wheat midge compared to the relatively low counts for the 2022 forecast.”

Farmers are encouraged to scout fields to determine if a pesticide application is necessary.

“To determine midge populations and, if necessary, timing of an insecticide application, growers are urged to monitor conventional wheat fields during the susceptible period – when the wheat head becomes visible as the boot splits until mid-flowering (anthesis),” Saskatchewan’s map says.

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