Rachel Bergey, 14, of Harleysville, has received several awards, and now a patent, for her innovative spotted lanternfly trap made from foil and plastic, writes Thomas Drayton for FOX 29.
Bergey, who has been homeschooled since the fourth grade, started to notice how much trouble the presence of spotted lanternflies was causing over a year ago.
“Our trees were infested, and so we wanted to try and find a way to get rid of the spotted lanternflies and save our trees,” she said.
Her attempt to use yellow tape was less than successful, so she went back to brainstorming. Then, she came up with the idea of creating a tunnel inside a tinfoil barrier that would guide the insects into a net.
Once everything was up and running, she observed that the insects have such strong climbing instinct that they were not motivated to leave the plastic trap.
Through the experiment that lasted for two weeks, she caught more than 600 insects. She also noticed they died within 24 hours and could then be easily disposed of.
In addition to the many awards and a place in the Broadcom MASTERS Competition, her project has earned her a patent.
Read more about Rachel Bergey at FOX 29 by clicking here.