The Spotted Laternfly (SLF) is a threat to Pennsylvania agriculture, including tree-fruit, hardwood and nursery industries. This invasive pest is also a major threat to homeowners’ trees and properties in general.
The Spotted Lanternfly attack fruit trees by feeding on the sap in the trunks, branches, twigs, and leaves. When the insect feeds on sap, it excretes a sweet sticky fluid called honeydew has a lot of remaining sugar and fungi will grow on it. Growth of fungi is black in color and called sooty mold.
Identification & Life Cycle
There is one generation of SLF per year. The eggs are laid in the fall and hatch in the spring. These egg masses are laid on hard surfaces and protected with a mud-like covering.
See the pictures below that illustrate the SLF at all of its life stages: egg masses, nymph and adult.
Currently, Pennsylvania is seeing a large amount of early nymph’s within our communities. Here are some tips to deal with Spotted Lanternfly nymphs.
- Smushing the bugs is effective and the method that is least harmful to the environment.
- Keep a spray bottle of insecticidal soap handy to spray lanternflies on contact.
- Capture them in a bottle.
- Use a shop vac.
- Wrap your tree with sticky paper/duct tape.
- Judiciously-used sticky paper.
- Spray weeds with vinegar.
- Plant more milkweed!
- Stop the spread
- Scrape eggs
- Brand trees to catch nymphs
- Remove tree-of-heaven
- Apply insecticides
Read more about the listed management techniques by reading Penn State Extension’s guide for homeowners.
Visit PennState Extension and the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.
Check out a video published by PennState Extension on Identification and Concern of the Spotted Lanternfly. Click Here to view the video.
Information provided by PennState Extension and the PA Department of Agriculture.