Keep an Eye Out for Spotted Lanternfly

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Keep an Eye Out for Spotted Lanternfly
This Summer

Image of spotted lanternfly

NCDA&CS – Plant Industry Division has received numerous reports of potential Spotted Lanternfly (SLF) finds in our state over the past year and although some of the images sent to us did contain a live SLF life stage, our investigation and follow up surveys have not found any established populations. However, the increasing spread of SLF in Virginia has us especially concerned that the pest may have hitchhiked to NC this summer. Finding and reacting immediately to SLF will be the only chance we have at control, so we are relying heavily on N.C. Cooperative Extension helping us spread the word to Master Gardeners and citizens to be on the lookout and report any potential SLF sightings at badbug@ncagr.gov .

The North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Plant Industry Division is asking travelers to several northeastern states to take precautions against the spread of the highly destructive Spotted Lanternfly this summer. “If your summer travel plans have you driving through Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Delaware or New Jersey, please review the Spotted Lanternfly quarantine map and do your part to prevent bringing the pest to our state.,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “This invasive pest poses a significant threat to our $91.8 billion agriculture industry.”

North Carolina has no reports of this invasive pest. Spotted Lanternfly is an invasive planthopper native to China that could cause billions of dollars in loss to NC agriculture, tourism and trade should it become established in our state. This pest is a hitchhiker and can be easily moved long distances on vehicles, campers, and outdoor equipment. If you plan to visit any of the indicated northeastern states in which Spotted Lanternfly has been found, it is recommended you thoroughly wash and inspect your vehicles before leaving. Also, do not move firewood. All life stages of Spotted Lanternfly can hitchhike, but the eggs and adults pose the greatest risk for movement. In northern states, adults can lay their eggs on any outdoor flat surfaces from July to December. We hope you enjoy your summer travels, and we appreciate your attention to ensure this pest does not hitch a ride home with you.

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