SPOTTED LANTERNFLY IDENTIFICATION
Spotted lanternflies are extremely destructive invasive pests recently discovered in the United States. Despite the moth-like appearance of adult spotted lanternflies, these pests are more closely related to leafhoppers, aphids and stinkbugs. All spotted lanternfly life stages are easily recognizable.
Adult spotted lanternflies are stout pests that measure 1 inch long and 1/2 inch wide. Their short antennae, black heads and black-banded yellow abdomens combine with pink-tinged, gray forewings spotted with black. A black, brick-like pattern covers forewing tips. Their black-and-white hindwings have bright red, black-spotted patches.
Immature spotted lanternflies pass through four wingless nymph stages. Through the first three stages, these pests grow up to 1/4 inch long. Called "black-stage" nymphs, they have black bodies and legs spotted with white. During the final nymph stage, these pests grow up to 3/4 inch long. "Red-stage" nymphs are brilliant red and black with white spots.
Spotted lanternflies lay egg masses on all types of surfaces, including cars, tree trunks, walls, picnic tables and barbeque grills. When fresh, the 1-inch masses look like clay or putty. As they dry, they look like cracked, caked-on mud.
SIGNS OF SPOTTED LANTERNFLIES
The first signs of spotted lanternflies are often swarms of the pests themselves. These conspicuous invasives congregate and feed in large numbers. They damage plants by piercing plant tissue and sucking out large volumes of vital plant sap. Affected plants ooze sap, wilt, drop leaves and die back. With severe infestations, plants die.
Black-stage spotted lanternfly nymphs seek out tender new plant growth. But red-stage nymphs and adults can pierce bark and feed on trees. As they feed, they excrete large quantities of sticky, sweet honeydew that attracts ants, wasps and other pests, and develops into unsightly black sooty mold.
HOW TO CONTROL SPOTTED LANTERNFLIES
Because spotted lanternflies are not native to North America, they have no natural predators to keep them in check. Effective control demands vigilance and prompt treatment to stop these pests at every life stage. Amdro brand offers two powerful liquid options to kill spotted lanternflies and help prevent their spread:
- Amdro Quick Kill Outdoor Insect Killer Concentrate, designed for use with a pump-style sprayer, is ideal for treating small trees, shrubs and outdoor areas where you and your family entertain. Spray all lawn and plant surfaces thoroughly, giving special attention to tree trunks where adult spotted lanternflies and red-stage nymphs gather. This product kills spotted lanternflies by contact and keeps protecting against these pests for up to three months.
- Amdro Quick Kill Outdoor Insect Killer Ready to Spray attaches to an ordinary garden hose for quick, easy treatment of small trees, shrubs, flowers and outdoor areas. The convenient container does the measuring and mixing for you as you spray. Cover all plant surfaces thoroughly to kill spotted lanternflies by contact. This product keeps protecting for up to three months.
SPOTTED LANTERNFLY CONTROL TIPS
Since their discovery in Pennsylvania in 2014, spotted lanternflies have spread. If you see these highly destructive pests in your area, notify your local county extension office or state department of agriculture immediately.
Always read product labels and follow the instructions carefully.