Do Birds Eat Spotted Lanternflies? A Surprising Feast Revealed

Spotted lanternflies are invasive insects that pose a significant threat to agriculture and have been increasingly spreading across the United States. These pests feed on a wide variety of economically important crops, causing damage and raising concerns among farmers and environmentalists alike.

Birds play an essential role in maintaining a balanced ecosystem, and their ability to control insect populations is a key factor in managing pest problems. Interestingly, some birds have been observed preying on spotted lanternflies, potentially providing a natural means of controlling their population.

As this relationship is relatively new, further research is necessary to understand the full extent of birds’ impact on spotted lanternflies and whether they could be a significant part of an integrated pest management strategy.

Spotted Lanternflies: An Invasive Species

The Spotted Lanternfly is an invasive insect native to Asia. It was first discovered in the United States in Pennsylvania in 2014. They are known for their colorful markings and the damage they cause to trees and plants.

These insects have a strong preference for Tree-of-Heaven (Ailanthus altissima), but they also attack other trees and plants. The infestation has led to quarantine measures being implemented in some areas of North America to control their spread.

Spotted Lanternflies undergo a fascinating biology and life cycle. Their life stages include egg, nymph, and adult. In October, they lay their eggs, which is the best time to try and destroy them to help limit the population the following year.

Here’s a comparison of the Spotted Lanternfly to a native North American insect, the Ladybug:

Feature Spotted Lanternfly Ladybug
Origin Asia North America
Colorful Markings Yes Yes
Damage to Trees Yes No (beneficial insect)

Some characteristics of Spotted Lanternflies include:

  • Colorful markings on their wings
  • Attracted to Tree-of-Heaven (Ailanthus altissima)
  • Potential to cause significant damage to plants

Managing Spotted Lanternflies can be challenging, with extermination being unlikely. Thus, it is crucial to raise awareness and educate the public on identification, prevention, and control methods to limit their negative impact.

Birds as Natural Predators

Spotted lanternflies are invasive pests with few natural enemies in the United States. However, certain bird species are beginning to prey on them. These include gray catbirds and woodpeckers. Native birds can act as biological control, helping to manage lanternfly populations.

These predators particularly target the lanternfly’s early stages, such as nymphs and adults. Some bird species that consume beneficial insects may also eat spotted lanternflies, contributing to natural population control.

Here are some features of gray catbirds and woodpeckers as spotted lanternfly predators:

  • Adaptability to consume spotted lanternfly nymphs and adults
  • Native to areas where spotted lanternflies are present
  • Reducing the need for chemical control methods

Some characteristics of spotted lanternflies that make them potential targets for birds:

  • Presence of large populations in affected areas
  • Easy to locate due to their distinctive appearance
  • Feeding habits that tend to aggregate them in groups, making it easier for birds to prey on multiple lanternflies

Comparing gray catbirds and woodpeckers as predators of spotted lanternflies:

Bird Species Diet Habitat Primary Prey
Gray Catbird Insects, fruits, and berries Gardens, woodlands, and dense cover Spotted lanternflies, caterpillars, beetles, ants
Woodpecker Insects, fruits, and nuts Forests, woodlands, and gardens Spotted lanternflies, beetles, ants, insect larvae

In summary, birds like gray catbirds and woodpeckers can serve as natural predators of spotted lanternflies, helping to manage populations and reduce their negative impact on the environment.

Other Spotted Lanternfly Predators

Spotted lanternflies, invasive pests native to China, have few natural predators in the US. However, some creatures do feed on these pests, providing some level of control.

  • Praying mantis: These insects are known to eat spotted lanternflies, as they feed on various pests. Both adult and juvenile praying mantises are effective hunters.

  • Spiders: While not as effective as praying mantises, some garden spiders have been observed preying on spotted lanternflies, particularly when lanternflies are present in large numbers.

  • Wheel bugs: These beneficial insects, closely related to stink bugs, primarily prey on soft-bodied insects, making spotted lanternflies suitable targets.

  • Yellowjackets: These insects are known to feed on a variety of pests, spotted lanternflies included. Their aggressive nature makes them efficient predators.

  • Garter snakes: Though not a significant predator, these snakes have occasionally been observed eating spotted lanternflies.

Here is a comparison table displaying the effectiveness and pros and cons of these spotted lanternfly predators:

Predator Effectiveness Pros Cons
Praying mantis High Generalist predators, feed on various pests Not as common
Garden spiders Moderate Prey on pests, including lanternflies Less effective than mantises
Wheel bugs Moderate Target soft-bodied insects Limited distribution
Yellowjackets Moderate Aggressive, feed on pests Can be harmful to humans
Garter snakes Low Occasional lanternfly predator Limited impact

In summary, praying mantises, spiders, wheel bugs, yellowjackets, and garter snakes have been observed preying on spotted lanternflies. However, their overall impact on controlling the invasive pest population is limited.

Birds’ Feeding Habits and the Spotted Lanternfly

The Spotted Lanternfly, or Lycorma delicatula, is a voracious invasive insect causing damage to various plants, including fruit trees and grapevines. On the other hand, birds are known for their varied diets, consuming a wide range of insects and pests.

Birds and Spotted Lanternflies

Birds, such as chickens and other insect-eating species, might be interested in nymphs or adult lanternflies as a potential food source. But it’s important to understand if birds’ feeding habits include this invasive pest.

  • Pros of birds consuming lanternflies:
    • Natural control of Spotted Lanternfly populations
    • Reduction of damage to plants and trees
    • Decrease in the mold growth caused by lanternfly’s honeydew secretions
  • Cons of birds consuming lanternflies:
    • Potential ingestion of toxic substances
    • Unintended harm to beneficial bugs
    • Dependance on birds alone for pest control might be insufficient

Spotted Lanternflies vs. Flying Insects

Comparing Spotted Lanternflies to other flying insects that birds typically consume can provide insight into why birds might show interest in them. Here’s a brief comparison:

Feature Spotted Lanternfly Typical Flying Insects
Size Large Varies
Attractiveness Colorful Varies
Mobility Hoppers Flyers
Availability Invasive, locally abundant Widespread

Birds in Gardens

To encourage birds to visit a yard or garden and potentially consume Spotted Lanternflies, consider the following options:

  • Set up bird feeders with suet or fruit to attract insect-eating birds
  • Provide nesting spaces and shelters
  • Plant berry-producing bushes and trees
  • Add a birdbath or water feature
  • Use bird-friendly netting or fencing to prevent unintended trapping

While relying solely on birds to control Spotted Lanternflies might not be feasible, they can serve as part of an integrated approach, complementing other control methods such as traps, chemical treatments, and manual removal of eggs and egg masses.

Population Control and Management Practices

Spotted lanternflies pose a significant threat to agriculture and crops in the U.S. Their impact has led to quarantine zones being established in states like New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia1. One strategy for controlling lanternfly populations is enlisting the help of birds as natural predators.

Penn State’s Department of Entomology has been studying potential predators2, including native birds that may develop a taste for the invasive lanternflies. An example is the Eastern bluebird, known to eat a variety of insects.

Insecticides can also help control lanternflies. However, it’s essential to select products that will not harm beneficial insects, birds, or the environment3.

Other management practices explore biological control methods, like introducing parasitic wasps as predators4. In vineyards, koi fish have shown success in keeping lanternfly nymphs at bay, as they eat the nymphs after they fall into water5.

The table below compares the effectiveness of using birds, insecticides, and other efforts like quarantines, parasitic wasps, and koi fish for controlling spotted lanternfly populations:

Method Pros Cons
Birds Natural predators, low environmental impact May not target lanternflies exclusively
Insecticides Potentially effective in reducing populations Can harm beneficial insects, birds, and the environment
Quarantines Limits the spread of lanternflies Can disrupt local economies and trade
Parasitic wasps Targeted control specific to lanternflies May take time to successfully establish populations
Koi fish Effective in certain environments like vineyards Limited to settings with water sources

It is essential to consider all available population control and management practices to minimize the spotted lanternfly’s impact on crops, vineyards, and your local area.

Citizen Science and Public Awareness

Researchers are studying the potential for birds to eat spotted lanternflies, an invasive insect native to China, India, and Vietnam that threatens the health of the Eastern United States’ trees and plants1. To gather data, they are enlisting the help of citizen scientists, particularly bird watchers2.

Spotted lanternflies prefer the tree of heaven as their host plant3. Their rapid spread is due to human activities, such as transporting infested material or items containing egg masses4. To increase public awareness and encourage monitoring efforts, information is provided on common characteristics of spotted lanternflies:

  • Adult lanternflies are moth-like with distinctive calls
  • Nymphs are often mistaken for ticks or yellow jackets
  • They are plant-eating insects with a preference for tree of heaven

By monitoring bird feeders and habitats, citizen scientists can help gauge the impact of lanternflies on avian populations5. They can report sightings of birds eating lanternflies in a variety of environments, including thickets and meadows.

Engaging citizen scientists contributes to understanding and managing spotted lanternflies. Some benefits of involving the public include:

Pros:

  • Larger data collection and increased accuracy
  • Faster identification of problem areas
  • Public awareness and engagement in conservation efforts

Cons:

  • Possible inconsistencies in data reporting
  • Limited coverage in remote or hard-to-reach areas

In summary, involving citizen scientists and increasing public awareness are crucial steps toward combating the spotted lanternfly invasion. Continuous monitoring of bird populations will provide valuable insights into their interactions with these invasive insects.

Footnotes

  1. https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/resources/pests-diseases/hungry-pests/the-threat/spotted-lanternfly/spotted-lanternfly 2

  2. https://news.psu.edu/story/626533/2020/08/26/research/birds-may-provide-insight-managing-attle-spotted-lanternfly 2

  3. https://ento.psu.edu/extension/spotted-lanternflies/management 2

  4. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/12/211208115746.htm 2

  5. https://wtop.com/maryland/2019/10/koi-pond-helps-contain-spotted-lanternflies-at-md-vineyard/ 2

Reader Emails

Over the years, our website, whatsthatbug.com has received hundreds of letters and some interesting images asking us about these insects. Scroll down to have a look at some of them.

Letter 1 – White Cicada Nymph from China

 

Subject: Chinese white spotted black bug
Location: China – about 2 hours from Beijing
July 4, 2012 12:22 am
Can you assist?
It sort of looks like a weevil?
With thanks,
Signature: David

White Cicada Nymph from China

Hi David,
Though it is a Fulgorid Planthopper and not a true Cicada, this nymph is known as a White Cicada.

Letter 2 – White Cicada Nymphs from Korea: Lycorma delicatula

 

Unknown Korean insect
Location: Seoul, Korea
June 27, 2011 9:13 pm
These insects became a huge infestation about 4 years ago in Seoul. Since then they have had a large yearly population in the city. They became bright red as they mature and then also grown wings. As juveniles, they are wingless, but able to jump hundreds of times their body length.
Signature: DaveT383

White Cicada Nymph

Hi DaveT383,
This immature Fulgorid Planthopper goes by the deceptive common name of White Cicada.  It is native to China, but in recent years it has invaded Korea where it has become established.  Here is an early What’s That Bug? posting that has some informative links.

White Cicada Nymph

 

Letter 3 – White Cicada from Korea: Lycorma delicatula

 

Black bug with red and white spots from South Korea
August 1, 2009
I have already spent countless hours on the web (both Korean and English) trying to figure out what this is when I already am not too fond of looking at bug pictures. It’s a little less than an inch in size and saw them everywhere in a park in Seoul and on hiking trails (still in the middle of Seoul) back in the middle of July. When approached it changes the direction its facing much like a spider and when threatened, it jumps away– pretty far for a little guy. I didn’t get to take a picture, but from the profile its body tilts in a 45 degree angle at rest. Please help me sleep.
Judy
Seoul, South Korea

Lycorma delictula from Korea
Lycorma delictula from Korea

Hi Judy,
Two weeks ago we received some photos of this interesting Fulgorid Hopper,
Lycorma delicatula, and it was Karl who made the identification for us.  Here is the excerpt from that identification.

Another Update from Karl
Unknown Chinese Hemipteran
July 31, 2009
Daniel:
I dug a little deeper and found an interesting story behind this handsome creature.  The species is Lycorma delictula (Family Fulgoridae : Subfamily Aphaeninae) and it has the erroneous common name White Cicada. Originally from southern China, it has been on the move recently and appears to have made quite a nuisance of itself outside of its natural range, particularly on the Korean Peninsula. I even found one reference in a report on China-Korea trade relations where it was referred to as “adding insult to injury”. It makes a living by sucking tree sap. Regards.
Karl

Goodness– I had a hunch it might not native to Korea since I couldn’t remember seeing them while growing up, even though they seemed to be everywhere this time.  Thank you so much for the identification.
Judy
Thank you so much for identifying this for me so fast.

Letter 4 – Spotted Lanternfly or White Cicada from China

 

Subject: Unknown Bug
Location: Xi’an, Shaanxi, China
January 29, 2016 3:06 pm
Hi.
I was wondering if you could identify this little critter for me.
Photographed at the site of the Terracotta Warriors in Xi’an China in September. Approximately 3cm long, although it appears to have wings, it did not seem inclined to fly despite a prod.
Thanks
Signature: Graham Williams

Spotted Lanternfly
Spotted Lanternfly

Dear Graham,
We have always used the common name White Cicada for this Fulgorid Planthopper,
Lycorma delicatula, but in researching this posting, we have learned on BugGuide that it was first reported as an invasive species in Pennsylvania in 2014 and that it is commonly called a Spotted Lanternfly.

Letter 5 – Another Invasive, Immature Spotted Lanternfly in Pennsylvania

 

Subject: Unable to identify
Location: Berks County, PA
July 26, 2017 5:03 pm
This insect was found in my rasberry patch. Just curious if it’s a danger to them or to me. It just sat there as I dug through them.
Signature: CW

Spotted Lanternfly Nymph

Dear CW,
This is a recently arrived, Invasive Exotic species the immature Spotted Lanternfly or White Cicada.  According to BugGuide:  “native to China, India, Japan and Vietnam; invasive in Korea and in our area (PA; Berks Co. Sep 2014)” and  “
SIGHTING REPORTS WANTED: Experts are working to delimit the current population and find new infestations of this species. Please report sightings on the Pennsylvania Dept. of Agriculture website.  earliest NA record: PA 2014. ”  This is a plant eating species that uses its piercing mouthparts to suck nutrients from host plants.

Letter 6 – Another Invasive Spotted Lanternfly sighting in Pennsylvania

 

Subject:  Gry and red bug
Geographic location of the bug:  Southeastern Pennsylvania
Date: 09/30/2018
Time: 08:49 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Very interested in what type of bug/beetle this is. My son is an environmental scientist and has never seen this one before.
How you want your letter signed:  Baffled Abba

Spotted Lanternfly

Dear Baffled Abba,
This is an invasive Spotted Lanternfly,
Lycorma delicatula, a recently introduced Asian species that according to BugGuide: “Native to China, India, Japan and Vietnam; invasive in Korea and in our area. Currently (2018) known from 6 counties in PA; also found in DE, NY, VA.”  According to Delaware News:  “The spotted lanternfly – a destructive, invasive plant hopper – has been confirmed in New Castle County. Delaware is the second state to have found the insect which was first detected in the United States in 2014, in Berks County, PA. The spotted lanternfly has now spread to 13 Pennsylvania counties.  This insect is a potential threat to several important agricultural crops including grapes, apples, peaches, and lumber.”  According to RecordOnLine:  “The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets confirmed that the spotted lanternfly, an invasive insect, was found for the first time in New York State on Nov. 29, 2017.” According to the Northern Virginia Daily:  “A professor specializing in the study of insects confirmed a few days ago the reported sighting of a spotted lanternfly at a business in Winchester.  The professor, Douglas Pfeiffer of Virginia Tech, had visited other parts of Virginia in search of the lanternfly, but this was the first time he has been able to verify its presence.  The spotted lanternfly, which feeds on the sap of vines and trees, first came to the United States from China in 2014. Since then, the insects have been found mostly in Pennsylvania. But Pfeiffer said that it has been expanding where it lives since arriving.”  According to BugGuide:  According to BugGuide:  “SIGHTING REPORTS WANTED: Experts are working to delimit the current population and find new infestations of this species. Please report sightings on the Pennsylvania Dept. of Agriculture website.  earliest NA record: PA 2014.”

Letter 7 – Lycorma dilicatula: White Cicada from China

 

Darth Maul bug in China
July 4, 2010
I have a grape tree growing in my back yard. I few months ago, as spring turned to summer, small black bugs, with white spots, started appearing on the tree (looking a lot like Shadows from Babylon 5.) I hosed the tree with water, and they disappeared. But now they are back, looking bigger and meaner! :s
It’s summer here now, with temperatures up to 40 C.
I just want to know if they are dangerous or not. After all, this is China, and you can never be sure of anything here….
HuanChu
Beijing, China

Lycorma delictula

Dear HuanChu,
Last Junea we received our first identification request from China for this immature Fulgorid Leafhopper which Karl, a longtime contributor to our website identified as Lycorma delicatula, the White Cicada.  Here is an excerpt from Karl’s response last year.

Another Update from Karl
Unknown Chinese Hemipteran
July 31, 2009
Daniel:
I dug a little deeper and found an interesting story behind this handsome creature.  The species is Lycorma delictula (Family Fulgoridae : Subfamily Aphaeninae) and it has the erroneous common name White Cicada. Originally from southern China, it has been on the move recently and appears to have made quite a nuisance of itself outside of its natural range, particularly on the Korean Peninsula. I even found one reference in a report on China-Korea trade relations where it was referred to as “adding insult to injury”. It makes a living by sucking tree sap. Regards.
Karl

Letter 8 – White Cicada from South Korea

 

South Korean bug
Location:  Songnisan National Park, Republic of Korea
September 23, 2010 1:56 am
On my trip to Korea I saw many wonderful bugs. This may be the most baffling one. I can’t tell if it’s a moth or beetle, or something else. I saw it walk and fly. It was about an inch and a half.
Signature:  Barbara

White Cicada

Dear Barbara,
Though it is called a White Cicada, your insect is actually a Fulgorid Leafhopper,
Lycorma delicatula.  There are photos of both the winged adult and red nymph on bjbug.com and you may also read a news story on the Korean Times online website.

Letter 9 – White Cicada from South Korea

 

Subject: I think it’s a bettle???
Location: South Korea
September 20, 2015 4:55 pm
I’m stationed in South Korea and I found these 2 bugs on a tree this morning. What are they?
Signature: Christian

White Cicadas
White Cicadas

Dear Christian,
Though they are commonly called White Cicadas, your insects are actually Fulgorid Leafhoppers,
Lycorma delicatula, and we frequently get identification requests for the bright red nymphs with bold black and white markings.  Also known as the Spotted Lanternfly, this species was recently reported in Pest News as an invasive exotic species detected in Pennsylvania.  According to Pest News:  “Spotted lanternfly feeds on a variety of host plants including fruit trees, ornamental trees, woody trees, and vines.  Apples, birch, cherry, dogwood, grapes, Korean Evodia, lilac, maple, poplar, stone fruits, and tree-of-heaven are among more than 70 species of hosts attacked by this pest.  Tree-of-heaven, which contains high concentrations of cytotoxic alkaloids, is one of the favorite hosts.  This is probably why spotted lanternfly is considered poisonous and used in traditional Chinese medicine.  Other preferred hosts such as Korean Evodia (Bebe tree) are also used in oriental medicine suggesting that spotted lanternfly has a high preference for hosts that contain toxic secondary metabolites.  Observations in South Korea also indicate that spotted lanternfly appears to have a wider host range early in life as young nymphs and a narrow range as they grow older, especially before egg laying.  Choosing plants with toxic metabolites for egg laying is thought to be a mechanism of defense to protect from natural enemies.  Although grape vine does not have toxic metabolites like these other hosts, spotted lanternfly showed a strong preference in studies conducted in South Korea.  Sugar content of the host plant also appears to play a role in their choice with a preference for hosts containing high sucrose and fructose content.”

Letter 10 – White Cicada from China

 

Subject: China bug
Location: Shanhaiguan, China
October 27, 2016 7:45 am
We saw several of these bugs in Hebei province (east of Beijing, on the coast) in early September. The body was a real eye opening red! Any ideas of species?
Signature: Su

White Cicada
White Cicada

Dear Su,
Though it is commonly called a White Cicada,
 Lycorma delicatula is actually a Fulgorid Leafhopper.  Your images are of winged adults.  We have more images in our archive of the brightly colored nymphs.

White Cicada
White Cicada

THANK YOU!  That was really helpful.  I think the pictures of the nymphs are amazing.
Su

Authors

    by
  • Bugman

    Bugman aka Daniel Marlos has been identifying bugs since 1999. whatsthatbug.com is his passion project and it has helped millions of readers identify the bug that has been bugging them for over two decades. You can reach out to him through our Contact Page.

    View all posts
  • Piyushi Dhir

    Piyushi is a nature lover, blogger and traveler at heart. She lives in beautiful Canada with her family. Piyushi is an animal lover and loves to write about all creatures.

    View all posts

52 thoughts on “Do Birds Eat Spotted Lanternflies? A Surprising Feast Revealed”

  1. Daniel, thank you so much for getting back to me so quickly. Much appreciated. In the meantime, I had also had it pegged as Lycorma sp, but thought it might be L. meliae instead of L. delictula. Pictures I found on the web of L. delictula looked different than the adults and nymphs I see here. For example, the adults shown as L. delictula were orange, whereas the L. meliae adults are red.
    As for the common name, white cicada, I also came across that, but as happens so often, the common name led to a number of candidates, most of whom were not even close. I suppose they got tagged as “cicadas” because they live in trees?

    Reply
    • Do they bite? I’m seeing them first time in PA over last couple days – on arms of outdoor chairs. Thanks for info!

      Reply
    • Thanks for the correction. We will also need to correct the spelling on a few additional postings. As a postscript, we have found references with both spellings, and when Karl originally provided us with an identification, his research turned up a link online that omitted an “a” from the species name.

      Reply
  2. Is this cicada species a periodic one? I first visited Seoul in October 2010 and heard many cicadas. I then visited Seoul in June 2011, May 2013 and September 2014, but did not hear any. I will try Wikipedia next.

    Reply
    • The White Cicada is not a true Cicada, but rather a Fulgorid Planthopper, and to the best of our knowledge, it does not make an audible sound. Periodical Cicadas like the 17 Year Cicada are only found in North America.

      Reply
  3. I found one of these at the YMCA in East Greenville Montgomery County PA. Are the a danger to trees or plant life? This is the first time I have ever seen one?

    Reply
    • This is a non-native, introduced species that may have a significant negative impact on native and cultivated plants.

      Reply
  4. I found a lot of them just outside Reading PA.
    I would love to know how they were introduced here……….
    And by who???
    How reckless!!!!

    Reply
    • Yes, this species is a spotted lantern fly. Last year they were noticed in Southeastern PA and the state has requested sightings be reported and have set quarantines in place for where they’re found since they are a danger to local industries.

      Reply
  5. Just now was the second one i have killed within a week and it hopped in the same spot as the last one… On my laptop table.. Idk where they are coming from im assuming my AC and i think their attracted to my lamp on the table. Im in Reading,PA. Its really scaring me the way they hop infront of me on to the table.

    Reply
    • The Spotted Lanternfly was first reported in Pennsylvania in 2014 according to BugGuide. This was likely an accidental introduction, and we suspect either nursery stock or traveling tourists bringing unlawful plants into the U.S.

      Reply
  6. My daughter has these little tiny black bugs with white spots on the outside of her apartment. When you try to smack or smooch them the jump very far. She’s afraid their gonna get into the apartment and harm her newborn baby. I would like answers please…. Thank you

    Reply
    • According to Featured Creatures: “Originating from northern China, the spotted lanternfly, Lycorma delicatula (White), is a serious pest due to their high reproductive capacity and large host range.” The site also states: “The spotted lanternfly has piercing-sucking mouthparts that are adapted to feeding from plant stems” and “Adults use cytotoxins as chemical defenses to deter predators (Barringer and Smyers. 2016). These are acquired through feeding from host plants, mainly the tree of heaven, Ailanthus altissima (Barringer and Smyers 2016).” To the best of our knowledge, they will not harm your daughter’s newborn, however, Featured Creatures notes “Lycorma delicatula is found on over 70 known host plants, with 25 identified in Pennsylvania, ranging from apples, grapes, birch, cherry, lilac, maple, poplar, stone fruits, and the tree of heaven (Barringer et al. 2016, Dara et al. 2015). Lycorma delicatula primarily feeds on Ailanthus altissima, greatly preferring it over many other species, and is likely to establish itself where Ailanthus altissima is present (Anderson et al. 2016). Lycorma delicatula and the tree of heaven are both equally invasive species originating from the same native regions of China and other parts of Asia. Using their haustellate (sucking) mouthparts, typical of the order Hemiptera, they feed on the sap in the phloem (Ding et al. 2006). Their host range includes economically important plants, particularly Vitis vinifera (common grape vine), which makes them an unsuitable biological control agent for the tree of heaven (Ding et al. 2006).”

      Reply
  7. Found a bunch of these in my garden on my squash plants primarily. They were all dead though. I live in Blue Bell.

    Reply
  8. I’m having coffee outside my house in King of Prussia Pa ( next door is the mall )….
    I took a video and some shots .
    He was here a minute ago but now has just vanished.
    I wonder if I’ll ever see him again ???
    Looked like someone gave a black bug some nice tattoo work .

    Reply
  9. I also have them in my garden. they seem to like my blackberries, grapes, pole beans and sunflowers.I,m an organic gardener…how can I exterminate them naturally? they are taking over.

    Reply
  10. I just noticed this insect resting comfortably on my perennial Hibiscus bush, which is now budding and getting ready to bloom. I live in Souderton, PA. Not sure what to do as they do not appear to be disturbing the bush yet?

    Reply
  11. These are all over my gardens here in Clinton NJ this year. The black ones are smaller, maybe the size of a green pea. The red ones are quite a bit larger, perhaps 3/4″ long. They’re everywhere.

    Reply
  12. These bugs are swarming on sumac trees in my yard. I see a few on other plants but the sumac seems to be their main food source.

    Reply
  13. I have hundreds of them on My deck. How bad are they for vegetables and other plants? I am located in Bear Delaware
    Thanks Bob

    Reply
  14. I’m in Central NJ,June of 2022. I just saw the ‘White Cicada’ on my house for the 1st time. Little black sucker with the white dots. I didn’t like it there so I swatted it a few times, and it took off like a jumping bean both times. Are these damaging or invasisive? Do they have natural predators. I sure don’t want them in the house along with the errant stink bug, if so.

    Reply
  15. have photographed a bug that looks so much like the one posted here but also found google photos of nymph spotted lantern flies, which seem identical too. How does one decipher the difference between these two bugs? and what is the best way to get rid of an infestation that has spread from vegetable plants to other hard surfaces in my yard? i.e. a metal shed, wood table etc.

    Reply
  16. I have a small garden on my deck and I’m noticing these bugs. I decided to google them and landed on this website. It’s very informative. I’ve been squashing them.

    Reply

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