Agriculture Services Department
Birch Hills County’s Agriculture Services Department provides the following services and resources to the agricultural community:
- Agricultural Service Board (ASB) -An advisory Board to Council, that through recommendations to Council, tailors ASB programs to meet the needs of the County. (ASB Act)
- Weed Inspections Weed Control Act
- Agricultural Pest Control Agricultural Pests Act
- Provide resources on soil erosion by wind and water https://www.qp.alberta.ca/documents/Acts/S15.pdf
- Provide resources to mitigate risk, and rapidly respond to animal disease outbreaks Animal Health Act
Agriculture is an integral part of our community and the lifestyle of our residents. Birch Hills County endeavours to provide programming, resources, and support to our producers that is relevant and timely in the ever changing environment of agriculture.
- Agricultural Plastics
- Pesticide Container Disposal
- Invasive Animals
- Weed Fact Sheets
- Agriculture Bylaws and Policies
- Helpful Resources
Birch Hills County is unable to accept any grain bags for recycling or disposal at this time, but we have some exciting news!
Birch Hills County is partnering with Cleanfarms to become an official collection site for grain bags and twine at our Tangent landfill location. Cleanfarms is an environmental stewardship organization that works collaboratively with partner agencies and the government to ensure that producers can actively contribute to a healthy environment and sustainable future.
Cleanfarms, in partnership with Alberta Plastic Recycling Group, is operating a pilot program to collect agricultural grain bags and twine for recycling.
Once we are able to accept your grain bags, please follow these three steps to ensure that we can accept them for recycling:
1. Remove debris: Grain bags need to be free of as much foreign material as possible.
2. Roll: Grain bags need to be rolled tightly with a mechanical grain bag roller or old round hay baler (most grain bag extractors roll the bags too loosely), and secured tightly with twine.
3. Return: Contact the Director of Agriculture Services at 780-694-3793 or 780-864-7567 for a drop off appointment prior to dropping off your grain bags. All gran bags will be inspected to ensure that they in a condition suitable for recycling. Birch Hills County cannot accept unrolled, extractor rolled, or hand rolled grain bags. Any improperly rolled grain bags will be rejected.
Loosely rolled grain bags weigh very little but require a lot of space, plus they are difficult to manage and inefficient to transport for recycling.
Please follow these three steps to ensure that your used twine can be accepted and recycled:
1. Remove debris: Shake to remove debris, snow, and/or ice.
2. Bag: Place loose plastic twine in a collection bag. Collection bags can be picked up at the County office or at the Tangent landfill. Only plastic twine can be accepted. Bags of twine with sisal twine, netting, rope, or other materials will be rejected.
3. Return: Bring your full bags to the Tangent landfill collection site for disposal.
Birch Hills County’s Tangent landfill is a collection site for empty pesticide containers. We can accept containers up to 23L. For tote and drum disposal, please return to your chemical vendor.
Please follow the following three steps to ensure that your containers are accepted at our collection site:
1. Rinse and Puncture: Tripple rinse or pressure rinse the containers to ensure that there is no product wasted and puncture the container to ensure that it cannot be reused.
2. Remove the Label and Cap: Remove the booklets that are attached to the pesticide containers and the caps (discard in the regular garbage); leave the glued on labels on the container. If the container has a metal handle, please remove it as well.
3. Bag and Return: Place the containers into bags and take them to the collection site. Bags are free of charge can be picked up at the County office, and are also available at the collection site. Your local retailer should also have bags available.
Wild Boar at Large (Feral Pigs)
In Alberta, feral pigs are raised for gourmet meat markets, and escapees have established feral populations. Alberta Agriculture & Irrigation reports there are populations in north-central and northwestern Alberta, including the Peace River Region, but numbers of animals are uncertain. The Agricultural Service Boards and Alberta Agriculture have been working cooperatively to control wild boars at large. Wild Boar at large are a designated pest under the Agricultural Pests Act and Pest and Nuisance Control Regulation.
If you see any wild boar at large, please contct the Director of Agriculture Services at 780-864-7567 or call 310-farm. Alternatively, you can report feral pigs by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Norway rats travelled to North America on ships that sailed from Europe in the 1700’s.
Some sources say they may have originated from Asia and have since infiltrated the rest of the globe except the north and south poles, Alberta, and a couple of small islands that are working to eradicate rats in New Zealand and the Aleutian Islands.
In Alberta, Norway rats and any species with the Genius “Rattus”, are listed as “Pests” in the Agricultural Pests Act and its Regulations. This means land owners and local government shall work to prevent infestations, and control or destroy invasive rats in the province. Alberta has maintained a “rat-free status” since 1937 because there are no residential populations of Norway or Roof rats in the province. Any rat infestations are controlled and eradicated. Along the Southeast corner of the Alberta border there is a 30 km long “rat control zone” where the province and local government work to control any Norway or Roof rats from entering into Alberta from Saskatchewan. Their movement is also blocked by the Rocky Mountains on the west border and sparse human distribution on the north and south borders where farms are spread out from one another.
Occasionally rats can hitch a ride into Birch Hills County on transport trucks. or other modes of transportation associated with people. It is illegal to own pet rats in Alberta.
Please report any rat sightings to the Director of Agriculture Services at 780-864-7567 or call 310-farm. Alternatively you can report rat sightings by email at email@example.com.