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Counties to distribute leafy spurge-eating flea beetles

Counties to distribute leafy spurge-eating flea beetles

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Crucifer flea bettle (copy)

Flea beetles crawl on canola near Langdon, North Dakota.

People interested in acquiring flea beetles to eat leafy spurge, an invasive weed, will have several opportunities in upcoming weeks.

Several counties' weed boards, in conjunction with the North Dakota Department of Agriculture, are hosting field days to distribute the beetles.

"Leafy spurge continues to be one of North Dakota's most difficult-to-control noxious weeds," Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said in a statement. "Using the flea beetles for biological control, as part of an integrated pest management plan, has proven to be an effective tool in combating leafy spurge infestations."

Participants should bring a cooler with ice packs to carry the beetles, as well as sweep nets, if they own them, to collect the insects.

The field days are as follows:

  • Billings County, 10 a.m. Mountain time, July 2, Franks Creek Road north of Fryberg, contact Katie Dillman at 701-218-0113
  • Grant County, 10 a.m. Mountain time, July 9, Lake Tschida Boy Scout Camp, contact Merlin Leithold at 701-220-7908
  • Benson County, 11 a.m. Central time, July 9 (or July 10 if inclement weather), a half-mile east of the Pleasant Lake rest area on the south side of Highway 2, contact Tim Finley at 701-798-2776
  • Morton County, date to be determined, contact Cody Schnabel at 701-391-8006
  • Stark County, date to be determined, contact Travis Jepson at 701-456-7665
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