Invasive spotted lanternfly found at Corvallis nursery

State agriculture officials confirmed the appearance of a dead spotted lanternfly at a Corvallis nursery. The species is invasive and destructive.  

The dead insect was discovered in a nursery shipment that was sent from Pennsylvania, according to an Oct. 8 press release from the Oregon Department of Agriculture. The nursery immediately reported it to the state.  

Spotted lanternflies threaten tree fruit and grape production. It’s become a “serious pest” for South Korean grapevines. Grapes and fruit trees are major Oregon crops. ODA said wine grapes were valued at more than $238 million in 2019. 

“We are grateful to the nursery for alerting us about their discovery,” said Dr. Helmuth Rogg, ODA Plant Protection and Conservation Programs director. “We cannot be everywhere. That is why it is so critical to have the support of our industry and all Oregonians in detecting invasive pests such as the spotted lanternfly before it becomes widespread. The spotted lanternfly could become a serious pest here in the Pacific Northwest and we want to prevent it from coming to Oregon in the first place.” 

The spotted lanternfly prefers a broad range of more than 70 plant species including apples, cherry, chestnut, hops, maple, peaches, pear, pine, plum, poplar, oak, rose, and walnut. It was first seen in Pennsylvania in 2014 and it was believed to have arrived on shipments from China. Since then it has been detected in 11 eastern states. 

By Cody Mann