Spotted Lanternfly Update
Thursday, April 9, 2015
Posted by: Cathy Corrigan
In November 2014, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA) issued a quarantine on this new invasive pest found in Eastern Berks County. Through efforts by PDA and the community, egg masses have been scraped throughout late fall and winter and PDA has reported approximately 18,900 spotted lanternflys were killed as of April 7, 2015. However this is not the entire population.
In 2015, the first full field season for this pest, a number of control strategies are being tested, and information crucial to the long term eradication of the pest is required. One control tactic has already been demonstrated to provide effective control and will be implemented to keep population contained at low levels as the other strategies are evaluated. This strategy is tree banding. A volunteer tree banding program has been launched in Berks County for owners of properties with a confirmed detection.
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, in cooperation with the United States Department of Agriculture, is attempting to eradicate this new pest to North America. PDA and Penn State Extension in Berks County is diligently working to educate the industry and the community on these pests.
Sometime in mid-May, spotted lanternfly nymphs will hatch from the egg masses that were laid on tree bark, stones, and other objects near trees where adults congregated last fall.
Nymphs will complete four immature stages. The first stage (image #3 above) is black with white spots and wingless. As it grows, the Spotted Lanternfly will start to develop red patches (image #4 above) in addition to the white spots. Nymphs spread from the initial site by crawling and feeding on woody and non-woody plants.
You can learn more about this invasive pest through the links below: