Sighting for October 4, 2021

Meredith Koenig

Vineland City-owned property, Highland Avenue
Cumberland County, NJ

Sorry to discover 6 Spotted Lantern Flies on Ailanthus which grows up on margins of mowed and enclosed property behind mine. Have notified State and City. How long have they been in Cumberland County?

[Thanks for the report, MK.

[Sadly, this invasive insect is moving southeastward across the Coastal Plain of NJ – spreading out from the dense populations along the Delaware River. Original source was Berks County PA, apparently, discovered there in 2014. If anyone wants to follow their worrisome expansion, just join iNaturalist where the species is reported from various spots in NJ every day. At the moment there are 4 iN reports from CUM, 7 from CMY, 23 from ATL, 26 from SAL, 41 from OCN, 122 from GLO, 131 from CAM, and 194 from BUR. Many are reports of multiple individuals and, of course, those are only reports on iN. Other sites are collecting multiple reports as well.

[You can find much info on the Internet about the species and its expansion, the damage it does, and the efforts to curtail it. NYT headline from a few weeks ago "If you see this beautiful insect, kill it!" jc]

spotted lantern fly