WATERTOWN, Mass (WBZ NewsRadio) — While the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources urges residents to be on the lookout for the invasive spotted lanternflies found recently in Springfield, some people wish no harm to the pests.
"All beings in the universe are interconnected as one life," Reverend Hyunoh Kim of Won Buddhism of Boston Center in Watertown told WBZ's Suzanne Sausville.
Reverend Hyunoh Kim said she would not harm the spotted lanternfly if she saw one. She believes we can find other ways to contain the pests while respecting their life.
"Each individual living creature has it's own right to live, the same as me, as a human. But rather than mass killing, from the Buddhist perspective first we need to cultivate the compassion for life," she said.
Reverend Hyunoh Kim says due cause is usually based in fear with a need to protect oneself. The state says to be on the lookout for the invasive pests.
Spotted lanternflies feed on over 103 species of plants and will lay eggs masses on others, making them a threat for about 172 species, according to the University of Massachusetts Amherst Extension Landscape, Nursery, and Urban Forestry Program.
“With new populations of the spotted lanternfly likely to pop up more and more frequently as the invasive pest becomes established across the northeast, it is critical that we all remain diligent in identifying them early on,” Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources Commissioner John Lebeaux said in a statement. “Anyone who sees this pest is asked to report it promptly. Early detection will help limit the spread of spotted lanternfly and give orchards, farms, and other growers time to prepare.”
MDAR is urging anyone who has received goods and materials from states where the spotted lanternflies are known to be, including Connecticut, Delaware, Indiana, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia to keep a watchful eye. If a spotted lanternfly is found, they have asked the public to take a photo or collect it and report it using the online form.
WBZ's Suzanne Sausville (wbzSausville) reports: