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Residents Asked to Report Sightings of Invasive Spotted Lanternfly, Recently Detected in Worcester

For Immediate Release: 9/18/2022 12:42 pm

The Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR) recently confirmed detection of the invasive insect known as Spotted Lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula) in the City of Worcester. The City of Worcester Department of Sustainability and Resilience encourages all residents to be on alert for the insect, and to report positively identified specimens to MDAR.

The Spotted Lanternfly is a pest that attacks grapes, maple trees, hops vines, and many other types of plants. There is concern that this pest could impact grape/wine producers and other agricultural commodities in our state, and could also interfere with outdoor events and activities due to the swarming behavior of adult lanternflies that has been observed in late summer and fall in other states with heavy infestations.

The insects were originally discovered by survey teams from the Asian Longhorned Beetle Cooperative Eradication Program and then confirmed by the Spotted Lanternfly Survey Team at the MDAR. At this point this appears to be a small satellite population, but additional inspection teams will be heading out to do surveys this week and next (weather depending) in order to determine the extent of the infestation. There are already confirmed infestations of this pest in Shrewsbury, Fitchburg, and Springfield.

Residents may see MDAR and USAD surveyors over the next several days checking trees in the area. Officials want residents to be aware of this and encourage you to learn more about the Spotted Lanternfly, and to report any sightings with MDAR.

Learn more and report a sighting of the Spotted Lanternfly here: https://massnrc.org/pests/slfreport

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