Spotted Lanternfly Alert
The Spotted Lanternfly, Lycorma delicatula (White), an invasive planthopper, has been discovered in Berks and surrounding counties in Pennsylvania. It is native to China, Bangladesh, Vietnam, and introduced to Japan and Korea where it has become a major pest of grapes. This insect has the potential to greatly impact the grape, hops and logging industries. Early detection is vital for the protection of Pennsylvania businesses and agriculture. It has been observed in Radnor Township.
The Spotted Lanternfly adult is approximately 1" long and 1/2" wide at rest. 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.
Signs & Symptoms
The spotted lanternfly feeds on many types of plants but strongly prefers Tree of Heaven. Attacked trees will develop weeping wounds. These wounds will leave a greyish or black trail along the trunk. This sap will attract other insects to feed, notably wasps and ants. In late fall, adults will lay egg masses on host trees and nearby smooth surfaces like stone, outdoor furniture, vehicles, and structures. Newly laid egg masses have a grey mud-like covering which can take on a dry cracked appearance over time. Old egg masses appear as rows of 30-50 brownish seed-like deposits in 4-7 columns on the trunk, roughly an inch long.
What to Do
If you see egg masses, scrape them off, double bag them and throw them away. You can also place the eggs into alcohol or hand sanitizer to kill them. Please report sightings of egg masses, nymphs, or adult spotted lanternfly. Collect a specimen: Specimens of any life stage can be turned in to the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture's Entomology lab for verification. Take a picture: A photograph of any life stage (including egg masses) can be submitted to Badbug@pa.gov. Report a site: If you can't take a specimen or photograph: call the Automated Invasive Species Report Line at 1-888-4BAD-FLY and leave a message detailing your sighting and contact information. Or Contact the Township Arborist John Hosbach: 610-731-7969
A special thank you to Steve McNelis, Radnor Township Director of Public Works, Township Arborist, John Hosbach and Township residents Jane & Matt Golas and Sara Pilling.