The spotted lantern is an invasive and harmful insect

I was at a gas station in Wooster over seven years ago when I saw this guy in a Penn State shirt who was an arborist. I try to be a friendly person wherever I go. Some days are easier than others I guess. While I was refueling, I struck up a conversation with this arborist and found out he was a neighbor down the street and a few blocks away. After returning home, I also discovered that my conversation about this pest that I mentioned in the title was the second I had had in just a few months. It looks like they’re about to dominate the conversation soon. It looks like this bug is following our transport lines on its way here.

What my new neighbor said is that the emerald ash borer has devastated our ash trees and now we have to worry about this fly, actually a grasshopper, called the spotted lantern. The Dappled Lantern, or Lycorma delicatulais an invasive leafhopper that was first discovered in America in Berks County, Pennsylvania in 2014.

This insect is native to China, India and Vietnam, and was introduced to Korea where it has become a major pest. This pest has the potential to seriously impact grapes, hops, willow, tree of heaven and other fruit trees, and my neighbor said he has seen it in beech trees. Eventually, this insect will have a serious impact on forestry, orchards and vineyards.

It’s time to start implementing quarantines

Whether it’s good or bad, government officials tasked with implementing quarantines must start this process in Ohio. The latest report indicates that these insects are found in Cleveland and Jefferson County. If the destruction they have inflicted on neighboring states is similar to what we are about to experience, perhaps we should start preparing.

In 1845, Adam White, an entomologist, was visiting a habitat outside of Nanjing, China, and saw this insect. This insect is said to have a black head and grayish wings that have spots and glow red, hence its name. The lantern has wingtips that appear to be covered in black bricks and gray mortar between the bricks. This hopper has a long mouth/nose that it uses as a piercing instrument that drains sap from the tree. Waste products called honeydew and a mold called sooty mold grow where the honeydew has settled.

When the insect flies, a white wedge appears in the middle of the wing. I think they are very interesting in their appearance.

Mottled lanterns in two different phases are seen in Pennsylvania on July 16, 2018.

From April to May, the nymphs hatch from their egg and go through several immature stages. This first stage is wingless and appears black with white spots. As the nymph develops, it has red wing pads and a red upper body before taking on the appearance of an adult. At this point in their life cycle, they cannot fly, which means they jump or crawl to seek out the plants in their food. In July, these nymphs become adults. Their favorite tree is also an oriental native, the tree of heaven. These insects lay their eggs on trees with smooth trunks, stones or smooth surfaces. You’ll be happy to know that none of the celestial trees I encountered showed any sign of the insect. When you search for them, they are likely to be found near train tracks first when they invade.

The Tree of Heaven is the Mottled Lantern's favorite host or food source.

Tips for managing the lantern

Here are some methods to control the spotted lanternfly.

From October to May, you can scrape the eggs from any surface, double bag them and put them on the curb, or place them in a Ziplock bag with alcohol or hand sanitizer for them. kill. The smooth-barked celestial tree is the last meal for males before they seek out females to mate with. Therefore, removing this tree from your landscape will prevent this insect from laying eggs or saving it as a trap.

This tree should also be treated with a systemic pesticide called imidacloprid as a basal bark spray, which controls the insect. The warning about this compound is that it is a neonicotinoid and is a neurotoxin to the insect. I worry about how it would affect other insects, including bees. Since the nymphs only crawl, this would mean that a sticky trap like Tanglefoot at the bottom of trees would also control the insect. The researchers found that adults and nymphs of the second and fourth instars or growth stages are seriously attracted to spearmint oil, which means you could make a trap to capture these insects. Finally, there is a parasitic wasp called Anastatus orientalis which has been shown to parasitize up to 69% of mottled lantern’s eggs as an excellent biological pest control.

The tree of heaven, a lantern favourite, is also an invasive species that reproduces very quickly and can kill nearby native plants.

The federal government is investing in naturally occurring fungal pathogens and insect parasitoids that will fight the lantern. We should all be aware that this insect can quickly grow in large numbers and can devastate an area. Hopefully it looks like we are better prepared for this invader than the emerald ash borer.

I hope you have had fun walking around your garden this week and enjoying your flowers. Hope you enjoyed the heat. Thank you for your participation in our column. If you have any difficulties, let me know at [email protected], I will do my best to help you. You can leave comments on my website ohiohealthyfoodcooperative.org.

Eric Larson of Jeromesville is a seasoned landscaper and gardening enthusiast and founding board member of the Ohio Chapter of the Association of Professional Landscape Designers. He encourages your gardening questions by emailing [email protected]