Spotted Lanternfly

Spotted lanternfly (SLF) is an invasive insect native to China, India, and Vietnam which presents a significant threat to agricultural, logging, and tourism industries through its detrimenal impact upon plant growth and fruit production.

As an adult, this 1" long leafhopper has gray to brown forewings with black spots and red hindwings with black tips and a stripe of white. As nymphs, the insects are black with white spots; red spots appear as they mature.

Impact: 

SLF poses a significant threat to agricultural and forest health, feeding upon a wide range of native hardwood and fruit trees. Grape, hops, and logging industries are particularly vulnerable to this pest.

SLF suck plant sap, directly stressing plants and leaving them susceptible to disease and attacks from other insects. While feeding, the insect excretes a sticky substance called honeydew. When large populations of SLF become established, they produce such copious quantities of honeydew that sooty molds thrive, hampering plant growth and decreasing yield of marketable fruit. Significant infestations can produce so much honeydew that it deters outdoor recreation.

Early detection and rapid response can protect our food and forests, and we need your help through surveying, monitoring for, and reporting the presence of these insects!

Pathways: 

Although SLF can fly and hop short distances, they are spread primarily by human activity. Laid on vehicles, firewood, outdoor furniture, and stone as well as trees and other plant materials, SLF egg masses may be inadvertently transported into uninhabited regions. If you live or are traveling in a region where SLF may be present, inspect and remove egg masses from items or materials stored outdoors—including your vehicle—before moving them. Take pictures of these egg masses prior to removal, then scrape the masses away and seal them in a plastic bag before be disposing of them in the trash. Report the presence of SLF using the instructions in the green box below.

You can also prevent the spread of SLF and other plant pests and pathogens by burning firewood where you cut it.

Hosts: 

Although SLF can fly and hop short distances, they are spread primarily by human activity. Laid on vehicles, firewood, outdoor furniture, and stone as well as trees and other plant materials, SLF egg masses may be inadvertently transported into uninhabited regions. If you live or are traveling in a region where SLF may be present, inspect and remove egg masses from items or materials stored outdoors—including your vehicle—before moving them. Take pictures of these egg masses prior to removal, then scrape the masses away and seal them in a plastic bag before be disposing of them in the trash. Report the presence of SLF using the instructions in the green box below.

You can also prevent the spread of SLF and other plant pests and pathogens by burning firewood where you cut it.

Detection: 

SLF may be seen from May through November, reaching adulthood during midsummer. The adult insects can be found congregating on host trees, especially tree of heaven and weeping willow, late summer through fall. Signs and symptoms of SLF presence include:

  • 1" egg masses on or around host trees; new masses are brown-gray, waxy, and mud-line, and old masses become brown and scaly, hatching in late spring
  • sap oozing from feeding damage on tree trunks, leaving dark streaks down the bark; may smell fermented
  • buildup of sticky honeydew secretions at the base of a host tree; honeydew can become covered in black sooty mold
  • increased bee and wasp activity due to exposed sap and honeydew

Report the Pest.

Use EDDMaps to report your sighting of spotted lanternfly.

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Contact Your Diagnostic Lab.

You can personally contact your state plant diagnostic lab or help collect data by submitting a sample of your plant and pest or pathogen.

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