Published: Nov. 01, 2022, 3:57 p.m.

By Jillian Delaney |

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Spotted lanternflies have been an absolute nightmare for Staten Islanders in the past couple of years. They are just everywhere: Parks, office buildings, homes. You can’t even go to the supermarket without one jumping onto your leg.

They even learned that the Staten Island Ferry is free of charge, much to the horror of riders.

So, City Council Minority Leader Joe Borelli decided to take matters into his own hands and sponsored a Spotted Lanternfly Hunt at Conference House Park on Oct. 30, 2022.

Joined by Mrs. Frydberg’s Monsignor Farrell High School class and other volunteers, Borelli “authorized” the officially-unofficial Spotted Lanternfly Hunting License for each participating hunter.

Those involved learned how to identify the dreaded spotted lanternfly egg cases that the bugs attach to the sides of trees, patio furniture, and so on.

Plus, it’s mating season so the need to eradicate the egg cases is even more prevalent now, otherwise, next year’s swarm could be as bad as this year — or worse.

They also squished a bunch of spotted lanternflies along the way, of course.

“I’d like to thank everyone who came out and became newly minted ‘lanternfly hunters’ this past weekend. The more spotted lantern flies and egg masses we can eradicate now, the less there will be this spring when a new life cycle begins,” said Borelli.

Wondering why you need to kill them? They feast on over 70 different kinds of plants, which damages agriculture prospects.

This isn’t the first time Borelli has tried to ease the massive swarms of the pesky buggers, sending a letter to the city requesting help as previously reported.

“Our Island is facing a new threat to our ecology, as invasions of spotted lanternflies are reproducing at an alarming rate,’’ stated Borelli in the letter, noting that the issue is affecting the borough’s most lush parks and surrounding areas.

“More needs to be done, not only to curb the population growth but to educate residents on spotted lanternflies in order to clear up any misconceptions or false information,’’ the letter stated. “My office has received a number of complaints from park-goers, property owners, and community members even fearful to step outside of their own home.’’

Read about how spotted lanternflies affect your pets here.

City Councilman Joseph Borelli (R-South Shore) is also making an effort to get help on the Island.

Even Islanders fleeing to the Jersey Shore aren’t safe.

Watch out using tape to catch the lanternflies — it could also harm other animals.