Thursday, July 6, 2017

Spotted lanternfly quarantine expands in two Pa. counties

Spotted lanternfly

Michele Haddon reports for the Bucks County Courier Times
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture recently announced nine more municipalities — including six in Bucks County and one in Montgomery County — were added to the list of quarantined areas in an effort to slow the spread of the "potentially devastating" spotted lanternfly.
The invasive insect is known to feed on 25 plant species found in Pennsylvania and poses a significant threat to the state's grape, apple, stone fruit and hardwood industries, which account for over $12 billion in sales, according to the state agency.
“This is our third season of combating the spotted lanternfly, and despite extensive work that has helped slow the spread of this potentially devastating invasive pest, the addition of these new municipalities illustrates just how challenging a task that is,” agriculture secretary Russell Redding said recently in a statement.
“Our goal remains to eliminate this pest from Pennsylvania and see to it that it does not spread elsewhere. But to do that, we need the public to help us by watching out for these pests, reporting new infestations, and ensuring that they don’t hitch a ride when you travel.”
The quarantine restricts movement of any material or object that could extend the bug's range, including firewood, wood products, construction materials, brush and yard waste. Outdoor household items such as lawnmowers, grills and tarps could also harbor the pest.
Newly added to the list of municipalities under quarantine for the spotted lanternfly is Telford, a borough that's situated in both Bucks and Montgomery counties. 
Also in Bucks County, Springfield, East Rockhill, West Rockhill, Perkasie, and Sellersville are now subject to the strict quarantine regulations, joining Haycock, Milford, Richland, Richlandtown, Quakertown and Trumbauersville.
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