In light of the recently expanded SLF quarantine, a well-educated population in Pennsylvania is critical to slowing the spread of Spotted Lanternfly in the commonwealth and safeguarding our vital agricultural industries that are threatened by the bug.
The Spotted lanternfly, Lycorma delicatula (White), is an invasive planthopper native to Asia first discovered in Pennsylvania in 2014. Spotted lanternflies feed on sap from a myriad of plants but has a strong preference for plants important to Pennsylvania’s economy including grapevines, maples, black walnut, birch, and willow. Their feeding damage stresses plants which can decrease their health and in some cases cause death.
It’s not just our plants at risk, it’s our economy. The Spotted lanternfly can impact the viticulture (grape), fruit tree, plant nursery, and timber industries, which contribute billions of dollars each year to the state’s economy. An economic impact study estimates that, uncontrolled, this insect could cost the state $324 million annually and more than 2,800 jobs.
Pennsylvanian’s quality of life also can be impacted. Spotted lanternflies excrete honeydew, a sugary waste that attracts bees, wasps, and other insects and this waste builds up on any surface below them. The build-up of waste also leads to the growth of sooty mold and black-colored fungi.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture has created a 2022 Spotted lanternfly toolkit, also available on their website at this link.
Join the effort to control and prevent the spread of Spotted lanternfly!