The spotted lanternflies in Pennsylvania have entered their next life cycle stage.
We recently reported that lanternflies were in
their nymph stage.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture reported that the spotted lanternfly nymphs were beginning to turn red, which means they are heading into their next stage of life.
Some lanternflies will stay in this stage until September, while others will form into full-fledged adults sometime by December.
Here's what to do if you spot a spotted lanternfly.
Currently, Lancaster County is one of the counties quarantined by the Department of Agriculture for the infestation of lanternflies. Other counties involved are Berks, Bucks, Carbon, Chester, Dauphin, Delaware, Lebanon, Lehigh, Monroe, Montgomery, Northampton, Philadelphia and Schuylkill.
The spotted lanternfly directly threatens $18 billion of agricultural products, according to state Department of Agriculture spokeswoman Shannon Powers.
They are destructive to fruit orchards, plant nurseries and valuable hardwood trees, but the scale of their destruction is not fully known, said Emelie Swackhamer, a Penn State Extension educator in Montgomery County.
“The effect is not immediate, the effect is cumulative,” said Darin Levengood, part owner of Manatawny Creek Winery in Berks County.
The insects feed on plants and excrete honeydew — which contrary to its name, is not a welcome substance. Honeydew attracts sooty mold, a dark fungus that can coat any surface where the honeydew lands.