Tracing the origin of Korean invasive populations of the spotted lanternfly, Lycorma delicatula (Hemiptera: Fulgoridae).
Lycorma delicatula (White) suddenly arrived in Korea where it rapidly spread out in the central region of Korea and caused serious damage to grape vineyards. To trace the source region of its invasiveness, population genetic structures were compared between the native region, China, and the introduced regions, Korea and Japan. We examined 762 individuals from 38 different population collections using 15 microsatellite loci. Both principal coordinate and structure analyses displayed that the Chinese populations were separated into three subgroups which were located significantly far apart from each other. Among them, the Shanghai population was located closest to most Korean populations. Based on the genetic relationships and structures, it was revealed that the multiple introductions into Korea occurred at least three times. In addition, the Shanghai population was strongly estimated to be a source of initial invasive populations of Korea. In addition, analysis of the approximate Bayesian computation suggested simultaneous spread from two distant locations early in the invasion by artificial transportation of the host plants bearing egg masses. Our population genetics study can provide a precedent case with regards to identifying spreads by anthropogenic outcomes in other invasive regions.