PHILADELPHIA - Spotted Lanternfly hysteria has fully enveloped Philadelphia, and now there's a catchy song to hum along while you're smashing the invasive pests.
'Die, Die, Die, Spotted Lanternfly' by Glenside musician Tim Cheney is something of an earworm itself, but the lyrical content of the folk song acts more like a public service announcement rather than a cheerful anthem of Lanternfly destruction.
"I'm telling folks the different ways they can deal with the Spotted Lanternfly," Cheney said. "Everybody has to band together - the whole city - and smash them!"
While it may seem harsh to kill the bugs sight-on-seen, state environmental officials say it is the most effective way to drive out the flies.
With no natural predators, the spotted lanternfly poses a multibillion-dollar threat to the state's agriculture industry because it feeds on stone fruit-bearing plants, and also leaves behind a sticky substance that attracts mold.
First discovered in Berks County in 2012, spotted lanternflies are now in more than a dozen Pennsylvania counties, including Lehigh and Northampton, and parts of New Jersey.
Now, with the infestation at an all-time high, it's paramount that you grab your makeshift fly swatters and swing away.
Especially if the Lanternfly in your crosshairs looks like Mike Jerrick.