The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship asks Iowans to be on the lookout for spotted lanternfly insects. The colorful but invasive and destructive insect is native to China, India, and Vietnam, and was accidentally introduced into Pennsylvania in 2014. It has since been confirmed in eleven states and often spreads by the movement of infested material or items containing spotted lanternfly egg masses. If allowed to spread further in the United States, this pest could seriously impact the country’s grape, orchard, nursery, and logging industries.
A community member notified the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship of the presence of two immature spotted lanternflies in Dallas County earlier this month. Federal identification confirmed the sample as a spotted lanternfly. Surveys of the immediate area have not resulted in signs of an ongoing infestation and entomologists hope the insects recently hitchhiked into the area.
If you think you have found a spotted lanternfly, please call the Entomology and Plant Science Bureau at 515-725-1470 or e-mail Entomology@IowaAgriculture.gov. You may also contact your local county Iowa State University Extension Office.