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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Newark, Delaware » Beneficial Insects Introduction Research Unit » Research » Research Project #438835

Research Project: Native Range Studies of Spotted Lanternfly Natural Enemies in China

Location: Beneficial Insects Introduction Research Unit

Project Number: 8010-22000-033-23-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Aug 15, 2020
End Date: Dec 31, 2023

Objective:
Spotted lanternfly is an insect native to China that has become invasive in the eastern U.S. and is likely to spread to other parts of the U.S. Recognized as a serious pest of grapes, it also feeds on a wide range of other plants including tree fruits, hops, walnut and various ornamentals. Natural enemies are thought to be important factors regulating populations in China. Preliminary exploration has identified several parasitic wasps as candidate agents for potential release in the U.S., but further research is needed to establish their safety for field release. The objectives of this project are to examine the biology, ecology and natural host range (alternate hosts) of these natural enemy species in China and conduct broader surveys to identify additional species of natural enemies.

Approach:
1) Continue targeted surveys in specific regions of China not yet adequately surveyed to detect and identify additional lanternfly natural enemies and document the range of all known natural enemies. 2) Collect and rear out live parasitoids to obtain live material to send by express couriers to ARS and U.S. collaborators under the lead direction of USDA, APHIS for further research. 3) Study and document the basic biology, behavior and ecology of spotted lanternfly natural enemies in China. 4) Conduct surveys to determine the natural host range of alternate (non-target) hosts of these natural enemies in China.