Spotted lanternflies are continuing to migrate across the region, despite quarantine efforts in select areas.
Now, the lanternflies have been spotted in Bedford County, according to the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
These insects are exotic and invasive with no natural enemies in the nation, VDACS said, and while they prefer to feed on the Tree of Heaven, they aren’t picky – VDACS said they’ll host on over 100 other plant species, including apple trees, peach trees, cherry trees, and grape vines.
Since the insects were discovered initially in Virginia in 2018, the VDACS said they’ve set forth quarantine guidelines in many different Virginia areas, including Lynchburg.
The quarantine requires businesses to check all items before they leave the designated area, and businesses also had to obtain a permit, according to the VDACS.
While the lanternflies have been seen in Bedford County, the area is not under quarantine, VDACS said, and they will study the areas to gain more knowledge about their spread.
If you see a spotted lanternfly, VDACS said you could do these things to help stop the spread:
- Kill any life stage of spotted lanternfly
- Inspect and kill spotted lanternfly before moving any items that are stored outdoors
- Manage Tree of Heaven on your property
- Keep windows and doors shut
- Don’t park or store items near trees and shrubs