There's a bug that has invaded the United States and is slowly taking over. These big, ugly flying creatures are typically found in places like China but we now have them in the United States and, if we're not careful, they'll cause some serious damage to our agriculture.

Starting from the eastern side of the states like Pennsylvania and New York but may very well start finding its way through the rest of the states including the west side and, if it does, it will do a lot of damage to our trees. So far, there have been confirmed sightings in 11 states.

This is the Spotted Lanternfly. They're big, dumb, and killing our plants. They're also reproducing at an alarming rate to the point where officials like the USDA are saying if you see one, squish it. They don't provide literally anything good to society. They don't eat dangerous bugs, they don't protect, all they do is destroy crops, plants, and trees.

The good news is that they're harmless to humans. If one flew onto your arm, you can simply swat it away, it won't bite. They are pretty big so you'd definitely know if one was on you.

The problem is when people start stepping on so many, it does get pretty gross. You're just walking along and see a pile of squished bugs. But rather this that's easy to clean than a dead tree, I suppose.

John Riggs
John Riggs
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So far, these are mostly found in places like Pittsburgh where they're a huge problem but are starting to be found expanding from there like New York.

These Spotted Lanternflies seem to prefer the tree-of-heaven as host for reproducing. Washington State does have the tree-of-heaven so if Spotted Lanternflies found their way to Washington State, it could be devastating to our crops, especially here in Eastern Washington.

John Riggs
John Riggs
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