U of L prof says no grasshopper infestation for 2023

With the recent heat warning in our city comes the potential of more of those pesky grasshoppers invading our fields and yards.

That’s according to Dan Johnson, a professor in the department of Geography and Environment at the University of Lethbridge.

Just a few years ago in 2021, grasshoppers invaded the backyards of residents on the westside of Lethbridge.

However, Johnson says that same issue won’t happen this year.

“So that urban invasion was entirely the two-striped grasshopper, and they mostly walked across the road into town. Some of them were flying. If they get hot enough, they fly. And remember, we had about ten days or something like that, above 30, and that gives them an enormous boost. But they would have stayed in roadsides and fields except the crops dried down and were harvested and they had nowhere to go, so they went into town. Now, that was caused by extreme weather, but it was ended by extreme weather. We had two rainfalls then and it really hit them hard. They were killed by fungi and their egg laying was reduced. The following year, they were cut in half again. This year, 2023 is the third summer since then and there’s almost none there at all, so won’t be coming in this year.”

Johnson says there are two main species of grasshoppers in the southern part of our province. They are the clear-winged grasshopper and the two-striped grasshopper.

Micah Quinn

After graduating from Mount Royal University in Calgary with a Broadcasting Diploma, Micah made the trek down to Lethbridge to work for Bridge City News. He has previously worked at City TV Calgary on the Breakfast Television morning show. He looks forward to connecting with this community, and reaching a new audience. Micah has a passion for interviewing and finding out why people think the way they do. You’ll often find him pursuing local feature stories and hard news.

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