KY FY22 Spotted Lanternfly Outreach 5.03

Grants and Contracts Details


Abstract Janet Lensing Laternfly Outreach IAF#14872 Abstract Until recently, spotted lanternfly (SLF) has been found in states bordering Kentucky such as Ohio, West Virginia, and Virginia, but the known infestations were not close to Kentucky''s borders. However, a recent detection of SLF in Vevay, Indiana is only 4 miles from the Ohio River which separates Indiana and Kentucky (July 12, 2021, communication with IN SPRO). Carroll and Gallatin Counties have a nearly continuous stretch of industrial and manufacturing sites on the Kentucky side of the river. With this new threat, it is imperative that we hire a dedicated staff position who will focus on SLF outreach and will train the public to look for this pest. This new staff person (assisted by other department personnel) will use several strategies to engage with and educate the public about signs and symptoms of SLF, pathways of movement, and ongoing survey and eradication efforts nationwide. First, we will train interested groups such as Master Gardeners and Master Naturalists to assist us with a visual survey for SLF and its preferred host, tree of heaven. We will teach the citizens how to identify the SLF life stages and the host plant in a training session and then they will get hands-on experience actually conducting the surveys. Their participation in the pest and host plant survey projects will foster interest and enthusiasm and will inspire them to share their experience and knowledge with others. Second, we will educate the general public and industry groups such as arborists and personnel from nurseries and garden centers about SLF through in-person events and through an online presence. We will hold information sessions in high-risk regions such as counties that border states with known SLF infestations. In addition, we will focus on educating groups that would be highly impacted by SLF such as vineyard owners. According to, Kentucky wineries have a $1.1 billion economic impact on the state and this industry could be devastated by SLF. Social media will also be used to educate the public about this pest. Publications and mailings will be generated and distributed. Third, we will use a train-the-trainer approach and include SLF in the University of Kentucky continuing education training that county extension agents must complete each year. Each of Kentucky’s 120 counties has an extension office and these agents are often the first person contacted by citizens when they see something of concern. By including SLF in the yearly training, each agent will then be able to educate the citizens in their counties. We will demonstrate the effectiveness of this outreach program by keeping records of: numbers of citizens educated via the citizen scientist training and the information sessions, number of sites visually surveyed through the citizen scientist training, numbers and locations of tree of heaven in the state, numbers and reach of social media posts, and quantities of outreach materials developed. We will generate survey maps from the data gathered by the citizen scientists.
Effective start/end date6/1/225/31/23


  • Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service: $45,974.00


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