Fighting the Spotted Lanternfly

Spotted Lanternfly

Spotted Lanternfly
Photo: Lawrence Barringer

The spotted lanternfly, Lycorma delicatula is a plant hopper (Fulgoridae) native to south and east Asia. It was first detected in southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014. Evidence from egg masses suggest it has been in the US since at least 2012. The US would like to stop it from spreading and have quarantined counties in Pennsylvania where the pest is located.

The native host of the spotted laternfly is Tree of Heaven, also an invasive species. Immatures can feed on a larger variety of plants. Its host narrow as it develops. Lanternflies can feed on grapes where they deposit honeydew, a perfect substrate for sooty mold that can ruin grapes. Of special concern are grape growing regions to the north and along Lake Erie. Spread to those regions would be costly. Laternflies also feed on hops and have caused damage to hop production in Pennsylvania.

Lanternflies do not disperse far on their own. Human aided movement of eggs can transport the insects hundreds of miles. Eggs drop from females and form a mass on logs or other substrates. Scientists are hoping that the nursery industry can help with their efforts by destroying egg masses and reporting pest locations.

About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is an Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
This entry was posted in behavior, by jjneal, Invasive Species, Pest Management, Policy. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Fighting the Spotted Lanternfly

  1. Pingback: Fighting the Spotted Lanternfly – Entomo Planet

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