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New breed of spotted lanternfly even better at dodging stomps

<h5>Adult spotted lanternfly</h5>
<h6>“Adult Lycorma delicatula” by Walthery / <a href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Adult_Lycorma_delicatula.jpg" target="_self">CC BY-SA 4.0</a></h6>
Adult spotted lanternfly
“Adult Lycorma delicatula” by Walthery / CC BY-SA 4.0

The following content is purely satirical and entirely fictional.

After months of defending itself from the bottom of students’ shoes, the invasive spotted lanternfly has evolved superior escape tactics. The new breed was discovered last Friday by Princeton’s Society of non-Territorial Organism Management at Princeton (STOMP).

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A vote within STOMP named the new breed the HoppityDotty Candlefly, narrowly beating out Pretty Buttheykilltrees.

“The issue with this new invasive species, the H. candlefly, is not only that they infest trees and crops with the same intensity as the spotted lanternfly, but they also have terribly quick reflexes and impressively high hops,” said STOMP president Eistud Yebugs ’25. “They simply dodge when we try to step on them.”

Yebugs’s findings on the enhanced dodging capability of the candlefly have correlated with a notable decrease in lanternfly corpses outside of Whitman College. For the first time in months, the “YES!” does not have a single red and black splotch inside its letters.

These invasive flies have nested in trees all across campus, and their rapid reproductive cycles and high survivability are destroying the natural ecology of Princeton’s campus. High survival rates may be due to the largely uncoordinated, unathletic nature of the student body tasked with stepping on the flies, namely Ecology and Evolutionary Biology majors.

Desperately in need of talented stompers, STOMP has formed an insect eradication task force with the Princeton TapCats, called TapCats StompFlies. They host workshops each Friday on effective stomping methodology — the innovative “hover, lower, and destroy!” method — in the Whitman courtyard.

Students who are interested in environmental action and tap dancing should sign up for the TapCats StompFlies task force. The first 100 students to join the task force will get a free t-shirt and fly swatter.

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Anlon Zhu is a first-year from Irvine, Calif. and contributing writer for the Satire section. He can be reached at az4244@princeton.edu.

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