The spotted lanternfly - threatening $18 billion per year worth of Pennsylvania agriculture products - could spread throughout the Mid-Atlantic and New England, west into Kansas, and show up on the West Coast, too.
US Department of Agriculture scientists earlier this month released maps showing areas suitable as habitat for the non-native, invasive pest first found in the United States in Berks County in 2014.
The publication of the federal scientists’ projections comes as members of Congress asked the department to continue to step up funding in the fight against its impact.
Areas in the United States that have been identified as possible spotted lanternfly habitat. Click here for a larger image.
A letter from 14 members of Congress to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue noted a $7 million increase in the federal Fiscal Year 2020 budget to assist states in addressing the lanternfly and requests at least the same level of funding in the Fiscal Year 2021 budget.
US Rep. Susan Wild was among those who signed onto the letter dated Oct. 8: “The spotted lanternfly is not only a nuisance, but a threat to the farmers and agricultural leaders in the Greater Lehigh Valley. From homeowners to our agricultural industry, everyone in Pennsylvania has been impacted by this pest and this funding would provide essential resources for research initiatives to help finally eradicate it. I am proud to join this bipartisan effort to stop the spread of this destructive and invasive species.”