No Fly Zone: Westchester Parks declare war on lanternflies with high-powered vacuums

As the battle against lanternflies continues, Westchester County Parks employees are strapping on their high-powered vacuum backpacks and getting to work.

Since July, they have been taking on the stubborn invasive species via vacuum at Westchester County’s parks in lower Westchester where the bugs cling to trees and just about every surface in bunches. 

Now, the Westchester County Parks Department is providing vacuums to local municipalities on a first-come first-serve basis. They have 10 to loan out. 

"It's also DOT land. We've talked with state DOT helping to manage infestations on any of their property too" said Jessica Schuler of the Westchester County Parks Dept.

Once the pests are vacuumed up, they’ll sit in the vacuum for up to two days before they die off with no host. Schuler says this method is the most effective way to eliminate the lantern fly population in the Hudson Valley.