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What’s All the Fuss about the Spotted Lanternfly?
The Spotted Lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula) is an invasive species originating in China that landed in Berks County, on the outskirts of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in September 2014. Since then it has spread to southwestern New Jersey, northern Delaware, northern Virginia, eastern Maryland, and even New York. It continues to make its way across the eastern United States.
Destructive to grape, apple trees, other tree fruit, and lumber industries, and uninhibited by natural predators in the US, the spotted lanternfly is considered a major pest.
How Can I Identify the Spotted Lanternfly?
The Spotted Lanternfly adult is approximately 1″ long and 1/2″ wide. The adult Spotted Lanternfly actually appears quite stunning despite its damaging presence. The forewing is grey with black spots, and the wings tips are reticulated black blocks outlined in grey. The hind wings have contrasting patches of red and black with a white band. The legs and head are black; the abdomen is yellow with broad black bands. Immature stages are black with white spots, and develop red patches as they grow.
How Do I Deal with the Spotted Lanternfly?
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture recommends destroying Spotted Lanternfly eggs by scraping them off the tree trunks on which they are laid, double-bagging them, and throwing them in the garbage. The department also recommends exterminating nymphs and adult Lanternflies by setting sticky traps on the base of trees and spraying with their recommended pesticides.
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