Alberta Weed Control Act

The Weed Control Act is legislation in Alberta that directs all landowners to prevent the growth, propagation and spread of regulated weed species. The Weed Control Act lists specific weed species as either Noxious or Prohibited Noxious.

Noxious weeds are generally present in the province already in large numbers. Noxious weeds are required to be controlled (inhibit the growth or spread) by landowners.

Prohibited Noxious weeds tend to not be present in Alberta or in very low numbers. Prohibited Noxious weeds are required to be destroyed (kill all growing parts, render reproductive mechanisms non-viable) by landowners.

These species are not native to Alberta thus they are here without their natural control mechanisms. Typically they have been introduced either intentionally or accidentally, tend to inhabit environmentally sensitive areas and will displace native vegetation that wildlife require for survival.

Weed Control Act and Regulations

Weeds of Concern in the MD of Bighorn
Images of these Invasive Plants (photo credit: Alberta Agriculture and Forestry)

For fact sheets on more invasive plant species visit the Alberta Invasive Species Council at

To see detailed information of all the regulated weed species listed under the Weed Control Act, view the Alberta Invasive Plant Identification Guide

Vegetation Control Program

Appointed as inspectors under the Weed Control Act, the MD of Bighorn Environmental Fieldman and Assistant Environmental Fieldman administer the municipal weed inspection and control program. Inspections for regulated weed species are done on private and public property throughout the growing season. The herbicide application program takes place annually from June 1st to September 30th.

Weed & Plant Identification

The MD of Bighorn Agricultural Services staff are available to assist landowners with resolving weed control issues and can offer suggestions for preventing future infestations. If you are unsure if you have any of the regulated weed species on your property or just need assistance with plant identification in general, please contact the Environmental Fieldman or Assistant Environmental Fieldman. They are available to come to your property and will try to identify any plant species you are unsure about.


Herbicide Applicators for Private Property

If you are looking for a herbicide applicator to do weed control on your property you can try contacting one of these companies.

Prairie Environmental Services Ltd. (Weed and Pest Control)

Greentech Environmental Solutions Inc.

If you are applying herbicide yourself to a small area on your property, you can purchase a small backpack sprayer from most garden centre locations for personal use on your property.  The MD of Bighorn has a backpack sprayer available to rent.  Contact the Agricultural Services staff at 403-673-3611 for more information.

This video demonstrates how to use a backpack sprayer.


Agricultural Pests Act

The Agricultural Pests Act is the legislation in Alberta that defines animals, insects and diseases as an agricultural pest or nuisance. The MD of Bighorn is responsible for managing agricultural pests and nuisances on municipal owned property and private landowners are responsible for managing them on their own property. Agricultural pests must be controlled while nuisances may be controlled. Some problem pests that you might encounter in the MD of Bighorn are:

  • Coyotes (Nuisance)
  • Skunk (Nuisance)
  • Richardsons Ground Squirrel (Nuisance)
  • Bushy-tailed Wood Rat (Nuisance)
  • Northern Pocket Gopher (Nuisance)
  • Magpie (Nuisance)
  • Norway Rat (Pest)
  • Dutch Elm Disease (Pest)

The Agricultural Services staff are available to assist MD residents with advice or information on managing these pests.

Agricultural Pests Act and Regulations