TEAM Leafy Spurge: Working Together to Purge Spurge Results: Before & After

Biologically based Integrated Pest Management combines ecologically sound strategies with other tools to provide better control and more flexibility than can be achieved using any single tool alone. It is by far the best approach. But in the end, the most important question is does it work. Absolutely! Just take a look at these before and after pictures taken from different types of ecosystems. These are good examples of the kind of results you can achieve.
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Bridger Mountains, MT
Before 1993 After 1995
Aphthona nigriscutis was released in 1994 and quickly eliminated spurge on a hillside interspersed with grass and conifers.

Ward County, ND
Before 1998 After 1999

Annual applications of Tordon and 2,4-D at these two sites, located 10 miles west of Minot, for 15 years did little to reduce spurge densities. In 1998, the landowners released large numbers of flea beetles (mixtures of approximately 75 percent A. lacertosa and 25 percent A. nigriscutis); the results are obvious in these before and after photographs.
Photo by Derrill Fick, Ward County Weed Control

Valley City, ND
Before 1993 After 1995
This infestation, at the Katie Olsen National Wildlife Refuge near Valley City (Barnes County), was about as bad as spurge can get. But the results of Aphthona czwalinae, and later, Aphthona lacertosa, are obvious. Hundreds of millions of flea beetles have been collected from this site and used to start new release sites all across the northern Great Plains during the 1990s. Amazingly enough, it all began with a release of just 80 insects in 1988.
Photo by Don Mundal, North Dakota State Department of Entomology

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