Protect Wildlife When Trapping Spotted Lanternflies

Denise Gillin Agribusiness, News

We are starting to see the more and more Spotted Lanternflies everywhere around us. They are invasive and a threat to plants, people, and because of popular trapping methods – wildlife. The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture outlines the serious damage the Spotted Lanternfly causes in trees and quality of life, including:

  • Oozing sap
  • Wilting
  • Leaf curling
  • Tree dieback
  • Growth of black sooty mold due to excretion of a sugary substance called honeydew
  • Swarming in the air
  • Honeydew coating decks and play equipment

Additionally, the Spotted Lanternfly is a threat to Pennsylvania’s agricultural industry. They threaten billions in economic impact and hundreds of thousands of jobs for those in the grapes, apple, hops, and hardwood industries.

The pervasiveness of the Spotted Lanternfly has led to the use of sticky bands as a preventative measure. These sticky bands are a threat to wildlife. Centre Wildlife Care, Lemont, PA reports a dramatic increase in birds, bats, snakes, squirrels, and even hawks caught on the sticky tape. Instead, they recommend these safe alternatives:

  • Tree bands
  • Circle traps
  • IPMs
  • Garden wire or other mesh around the tape (not chicken wire because wrens are small and squeeze through)
  • Fly strips put inside a small birdcage

If you find an animal stuck to sticky trap, tape, or fly strips, Centre Wildlife Care recommends putting paper towels on the sticky part and getting the animal to a rehabilitater. (To find a professional near you, go to Pennsylvania Association of Wildlife Rehabilitators).

Red Creek Wildlife Center, Schuylkill Haven, PA has additional information to trap Spotted Laternflies and to help non-target animals stuck on sticky tape.

The information used above and more helpful tips can be found on the following websites:

  • Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture:

https://www.agriculture.pa.gov/Plants_Land_Water/PlantIndustry/Entomology/spotted_lanternfly/

SpottedLanternflyAlert/Pages/default.aspx

  • Centre Wildlife Care:

https://centrewildlifecare.org/spotted-lantern-fly-traps

  • Red Creek Wildlife Center:

https://redcreekwildlifecenter.com/

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