Spotted lanternfly and why might it cost $22 million to?
Spotted lanternfly and why might it cost $22 million to: The spotted lanternfly has once again appeared in New York, New Jersey and other parts of the country. The pests‘ hitchhiking tendencies are putting many states at risk of invasion, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer says it will take $22 million in federal funding to stop them nationwide.
“This is a multimillion-dollar threat to the New York economy – both tourism and agriculture are currently at risk if the spotted lanternfly is not controlled,” Schumer said in a statement.
The black-and-white and red, spotted lanternfly – a native of China – first appeared in Pennsylvania in 2014, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). Now the pests are found in 11 states.
They feed on more than 70 plant species, including fruit trees and the vine tree, leaving their hosts vulnerable to disease. Cornell University’s New York State Integrated Pest Management is tracking confirmed locations of pests with an interactive map that was last updated on August 8.
The economic impact could be severe. In 2019, a spotted lanternfly infestation in Pennsylvania cost the state approximately 484 jobs and $50.1 million, and was estimated to cost at least $324 million annually if not brought under control.
In New York, the state’s apple and grape yields alone are worth $ 358.4 million, and “the full extent of the economic damage that this insect can cause is currently unknown,” according to the New York Department of Environmental Protection (DEC). Nationwide, the “grape, orchard and logging industries” could be severely affected if the spread continues.
Schumer is pushing for $22 million in federal support for the APHIS program in the upcoming budget. He said more funding would “enhance its work with states to prevent and mitigate invasive species such as the Spotted Lanternfly” and help educate the public about the threat. “We need to stop this bug before it spreads, otherwise our farmers and local businesses could face millions in damage and an unmanageable swarm,” Schumer said.
What does the spotted lanternfly do to humans?
What do you do if you see a spotted lanternfly in NJ? Remove and Destroy Pests: Crush nymphs and adult insects. Scrape egg masses into a plastic bag and place in trash. Remove Host Trees: Spotted lanternflies prefer the ailanthus tree, also known as “Tree of Heaven.” Try to remove trees from the business property to avoid attracting spotted lanternfly.
While the Spotted Lanternfly prefers the Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima), it feeds on a variety of host plants including fruit trees, ornamental trees, woody trees, vegetables, herbs, grains and vines. Spotted Lanternfly is known to feed on over 70 host plant species!