Invasive Pest Found In Worcester County

HYANNIS – The Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources recently announced that a single live nymph of the invasive spotted lanternfly was identified in Worcester County in late July.

The MDAR is urging the public to be vigilant and keep an eye out for the pest.

The spotted lanternfly is an invasive sap-feeding insect from Asia that first appeared in the Unites States in Pennsylvania in 2014.

The species primary host plant is tree-of heaven, but is also known to attack many different trees, shrubs, and vines, with the potential to inflict damage on a variety of agricultural commodities such as peaches, grapes, hops, maple syrup and ornamental plants.

Lanternflies may be found on the sides of buildings, and on or within vehicles. They are known to travel on shipments of produce and trees for landscaping from states with known infestations.

Those who have recently received goods from Connecticut, Delaware, Indiana, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia are advised to be on the lookout, as those are states with known infestations.

“This most recent find is a good reminder to everyone that there is a significant risk that the spotted lanternfly will continue to accidentally be brought into Massachusetts from other states” said MDAR Commissioner John Lebeaux.

If an individual suspects they have found a spotted lanternfly, they are advised to take a photo or collect the specimen and report the sighting using MDAR’s online reporting form. 

Adult insects are large grey bugs, measuring about an inch long, with black spots and red underwings. Younger nymphs are black with white dots, older nymphs are red with black and white spots.

“Early detection plays an important role in the protection of our states economic and ecological resources from invasive species,” said Lebeaux.

By: Matthew Tomlinson, NewsCenter

About NewsCenter

The award-winning NewsCenter provides the Cape Cod community with a constant, credible source for local news. We are on the job seven days a week.
737 West Main Street
Hyannis, MA 02601
Contact Us | Advertise Terms of Use 
Employment and EEO | Privacy