CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – This week is National Invasive Species Awareness Week and the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR) is reminding residents to check and report any egg masses of the Spotted Lanternfly they find.
So far this winter, MDAR has identified and removed more than 5,500 egg masses from tree trunks, rocky overhangs, and machinery located near currently known infestation sites in Springfield, Worcester, Fitchburg and Shrewsbury.
“Spotted lanternfly is currently one of the top invasive species management priorities for MDAR,” said MDAR Commissioner John Lebeaux. “This invasive pest has caused significant damage to vineyards in states where heavy infestations occur and has shown signs of impacting wild grapes, as well. Because of this, we have tasked survey crews with performing extensive winter surveys of known SLF infestations to locate SLF egg masses and remove any within reach.”
This pest feeds on sap and can damage or kill over 100 types of plants including grapevines, fruit trees, maples, hops, and blueberries. Additionally, they swarm during mating season causing an impact on outdoor activities.
What to do if you find a Spotted Lanternfly egg mass
If you happen to come across an egg mass of the Spotted Lanternfly, MDAR encourages you to take a photo and report it to the department online or by emailing email@example.com. An egg mass is typically gray or beige in color, about an inch and a half long and can be found on any flat surface. They are typically found on tree bark, fenceposts, other wood products and rusty metal.