In 2012, The District sponsored a grant through DNRC to combat noxious weed in the Redwater watershed. Along with 21 landowners, the District released 5000 Canada thistle gall flies, 5000 stem weevils, 3600 Leafy spurge beetles and 400 knapweed weevils. All sites where GPS-ed as they were released in all parts of the county.
In Year 1 (2012): Each site is GPS photographed for weed manifestation and determination of the amount of insects needed for each area is completed. Bugs are then released and monitoring begins.
In Year 2 (2013): Monitoring continues. Determine if colonies have been established.
In Year 3 (2014): Monitoring continues. Determine if colonies are thriving. If colonies are well-established, could follow up with herbicide to help eradicate weeds.
In Year 4 (2015): Monitoring continues. Determine if colonies are thriving and spreading to nearby areas where bugs were not previously introduced. Weeds diminishing in areas of release.
As of 2/28/2014 Update: In Year 2 (2013), gall flies were released in 6 additional sites in McCone County. Monitoring of bugs from previous year was not completed due to lack of staff. Monitoring will resume Summer 2014.
If you were a participant or have any additional information or feedback on the 2012 initial release of bugs, we would love to hear from you on updates with this program.
Please contact us at 406-485-2744 x100 or by submitting the form below: