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What's up with the spotted lanternflies in NYC?

What are they and what can we do about them?


As you may have noticed, the spotted lanternfly is swarming the streets of NYC lately. We've seen them on buildings, on trees, on sidewalks...you may even spot one or two in your home! These spotted pests are not going to physically harm you, but here's what you need to know about them.

What are spotted lanternflies and what can we do about them?

Well, the spotted lanternfly is actually more closely related to the cicada than the fly species. They are approximately one inch long, and with their spotted wings closed, about a 1/2 inch wide. Native to Asia, the spotted lanternfly was first discovered in the U.S. in southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014. It has since spread to New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and New York. They are invaders of trees and plants - mainly feeding off of maple tree sap, apple trees, and infesting agricultural crops like walnuts, grapes, blueberries, and other fruits. Though they are not considered a massive threat to our city's forests, they are considered a significant threat to our agricultural crops.


Learn more in this article from Cornell University!


 

So what can we do about them?


The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation has urged the public to control the population by killing any spotted lanternflies you see. There are very few known predators to these annoying pests.


One known predator is the praying mantis -- we love these warriors! So if you see a praying mantis, let it do it's thing and help us rid these spotted lanternflies from our city!


Learn more about spotted lanternflies on nycgovparks..com!


Connect with us on Instagram!


We're sharing our journey with spotted lanternflies, as well as fun tips and tricks you can use to brighten up your outdoor space this fall.


We're looking forward to connecting with you!

The Bella Gardens Team

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