Spotted Lanternfly detected in Clarke County

Biological invasions
The spotted lanternfly is an example of an invasive species that threatens plant life and crops in Virginia.

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has detected Spotted Lanternfly, Lycorma delicatula, in Clarke County.

Two adult Spotted Lanternflies were detected and positively identified at the Clarke County site. SLF is currently found in the City of Winchester and Frederick County, and both localities are included in Virginia’s SLF quarantine. At this time, Clarke County has not been quarantined for SLF.

Since the initial detection of SLF in Virginia in 2018, VDACS has been cooperating with USDA to survey and conduct treatments of SLF-infested areas.

VDACS will be surveying in Clarke County in an effort to determine if other SLF life stages are present. VDACS encourages all homeowners, nurseries, related businesses and local governments to scout for SLF. If you find this pest, please report your findings to VDACS at 804.786.3515, by email at or contact your local Virginia Cooperative Extension office.

SLF feeds on more than 70 plants, including grapes, stone fruits, hops and Ailanthus (Tree of Heaven). The insect causes damage to plants because of its method of feeding, the rapid buildup of large populations and the production of honeydew, a by-product of their feeding activity that serves as a medium for fungal growth. SLF can also be a nuisance pest to homeowners when found in large numbers.

Click here for more information on Spotted Lanternfly in Virginia or call David Gianino, Program Manager in the VDACS Office of Plant Industry Services, at 804.786.3515.

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