How to get rid of june bugs in the house?


4 Natural Home Remedies to Get Rid of June Bugs on Your Porch

June Bugs can be one of the more annoying pests during the spring/summer season. Try these four natural remedies to get rid of June Bugs hanging around your porch.

How to Get Rid of June Bugs

1. Set up an Electric Bug Zapper
Like most insects, June Bugs are attracted to a source of light. If you are dealing with a small infestation then consider setting up an electric bug zapper in an isolated corner of the porch. The Flowtron Insect Killer is one bug zapper we recommend.

The bug zapper, however, won’t do too much good if you are dealing with a swarm. Your best bet, in that case, is to limit the light source (around your porch) as much as possible.

2. Vacuum Them in with a Shop Vac
Shop vac can work well when dealing with flying pest infestations. Fill a wet/dry vac canister with soapy water then vacuum away. Once sucked in, the soapy water will suffocate the beetles.

3. DIY Light Bottle Trap
You can also set up a simple bottle trap to drown the June Bugs. First, cut the upper portion of a plastic bottle or a gallon milk bottle then fill it with a mix of warm water and molasses. Next place the bottle close to a porch light source.

Overnight, some of the June Bugs will fall into the trap after they fly into the light source. You may want to set up multiple bottle traps to maximize the effect.

4. Attract Natural Predators
There are many natural predators, like birds and frogs, that could keep the June bug population in check. You can attract these predators by setting up bird baths, large rock shelters etc.

You might want to also keep your own chickens in the backyard. As you can see from this video, Chickens love to feast on pests like June bugs, ticks, and grasshoppers.

  • How To Get Rid Of Silverfish
  • How To Get Rid Of Japanese Beetles
  • How To Get Rid Of Cabbage Worms

Sam Choan is the Founder of Organic Lesson. He started this site to share tips on using natural remedies at home when such options are available.

Everything You Should Know To Get Rid Of June Bugs Once And For All

If you have decided to opt for this method, use Merit, MachII and GrubX containing imidacloprid, thiamethoxam, halofenozide, clothianidin or chlorantraniloprole. The latter ingredient is known to be low toxic and convenient to use. A treatment that contains it can be used at any time once the grass is green.

Do not use the chemicals containing only such active ingredients as lambda-cyhalothrin, bifenthrin, cyfluthrin and permethrin. These substances only act against adult June bugs feeding on the surface of the soil and not their larvae.

How to Get Rid Of June Bugs’ Larvae Naturally

Natural larvae treatments have lately become increasingly popular. Although such products are inferior to chemical ones in terms of their effectiveness, they have some undisputable advantages, namely environment-friendliness and safety. Using nematodes is one of the most effective natural methods. They are worms that are to be placed into the soil that will infect larvae with bacteria and thus kill the pests. Nematodes are available in stores in packs containing up to 10 million worms. Remember that two types of nematodes are sold: Heterorhabditis bacteriophora and Steinnernema glaseri (aka S. carpocapsae). The former are more active, they follow the larvae and can descend deeper underground. The latter wait for their victim and do not stray far from the surface of the soil. For this reason the scientists consider Heterorhabditis bacteriophora to be a more effective treatment.

Another method involves using a natural insecticide, neem oil, an ingredient that is found in an evergreen Indian tree. Larvae perceive it as a natural hormone and consume it. Neem oil acts by blocking real hormones, making the larvae quit eating and laying eggs. For more details, refer below to our list of the top 9 best June bug larvae killers.

Also read: How to Get Rid Of Grubs?

A Comparative Review of Methods of How to Get Rid Of June Bugs & Larvae (Grubs)

Method/Killer Stage Advantages Disadvantages
Curative Chemicals

Larvae (carbaryl, trichlorfon), adult June bugs (carbaryl, cyfluthrin, lambda-cyhalothrin)

Effectiveness: 8

Quick elimination of larvae and adult June bugs. The least safe method as trichlorfon use is restricted in some states, and carbaryl is very toxic for some helpful insects. and bees and trichlorfon and carbaryl remove only 77% of larvae/
Preventive Chemicals


Effectiveness: 10

Causes minimum damage and guarantees long-term results. This is the most thorough larvae control as thiamethoxam’s effectiveness is 99.3%. You should decide whether to use this treatment when you still don’t know the extent of larvae infestation. These chemicals are useless on the larvae that have already infected your soil.
Bug Zappers

Adult June Bugs

Effectiveness: 8

Effectively attracts a mass of bugs with the lamp light, electrocutes them quickly. Requires manual dead bug removal, useful insects can be killed.
Homemade Traps Adult June Bugs

Effectiveness: 8

A quick way to reduce the population of adult June bugs which is completely safe for people and the environment. Solves the problem partially, requires daily dead bug removal.
Parasitic Nematodes


Effectiveness: 10

Is safe and natural, yields results within 24 hours, and does not kill helpful insects. Cannot be used in cold and dry weather, is incompatible with chemical pesticides.
Neem Oil

Larvae, Adult June Bugs

Effectiveness: 7

Is safe, natural and useful for the earthworms. It is effective for removing future larvae generations. Has a sharp unpleasant odor, the first results are not fast and the insects begin to die within two weeks.
Birds And Frogs Larvae, Adult June Bugs

Effectiveness: 6

A natural method, systemic approach. It is necessary to build and maintain birdhouses, feeders; birds can cause damage themselves.

TOP-9 June Bugs & Larvae Killers

We’ve found the nine best treatments recommended by the scientists. Five of them are killers for adults (bug zappers and insecticides for treating the leaves that the June bugs feed one), and the other four are aimed at eliminating the larvae. There are both natural neem oil-based ones and powerful insecticides.

1. Bayer Advanced 502570 Dual Action Rose and Flower Insect Killer Ready-To-Use, 24-Ounce

Its active ingredient cyfluthrin kills adult June bugs and imidacloprid has preventive properties. It kills on contact and protects you for a month. It is very convenient that the product can be applied regardless of the weather as it is rain-proof within an hour after application. It is perfectly suitable for home plants and can be used indoors. The product helps to get rid of various insects, but at the same time, it can be dangerous for pet reptiles and other pets, so make sure they stay away from the treated territory,

Here is what one of the users has to say: “I use as a preventative. Once leaf’s start I start spraying. My roses have looked great and the leaves are nice and green.” Judging by the users’ reviews, the spray is really good as almost 80% of them gave it either four or five stars.

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission BioAdvanced 502570 Dual Action Rose and Flower Insect Killer Ready-To-Use, 24-Ounce

By SBM Life Science


Last update on 2020-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Price: Check the current price

2. Bonide 195 Beetle Killer, 32-Ounce

This spray not only kills June bugs quickly, but also has repelling properties as it scares off the insects within eight weeks after use. It acts against both June bugs and other pests, such as Japanese beetles and Colorado potato beetles. It does not leave any stains and does not have a strong odor. Thanks to its convenient adjustable spray, a tree up to 25 inches high can be sprayed.

This spray only acts against adult June bugs and its active ingredient is lambda cyhalothrin. It can be applied on edible plants.

Users are not unanimous when it comes to rating Bonide 195 Beetle Killer as 57% gave this product a five-star rating and 14% awarded it the lowest rating. Nevertheless, one of the users stated: This is the only thing I have found to get rid of the beetles that destroyed my roses. Great stuff!” Opinions regarding the product’s effect duration differ: for some, spraying the plants twice a year within three weeks was sufficient while others used the spray once six weeks ago and were able to retain residual effect.

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission Bonide Products INC 195 O8799462 Beetle Killer, 32 oz.

By Arett Sales – LG


Last update on 2020-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Price: Check the current price

3. Garden Safe Neem Oil Extract Concentrate (16 fl oz)

A natural and affordable neem-oil based treatment. This product kills eggs, larvae and adult June beetles. It is safe and can be applied on vegetables, fruit, flowers and shrubs but is not recommended for plants with gentle or withering leaves. Garden Safe Neem Oil Extract Concentrate contains an insecticide, a fungicide and a miticide so it is extremely cost-efficient. Its active ingredient, neem oil, blocks larvae’s hormones and makes the insects quit eating and laying eggs, eventually causing them to die. The treatment effect will be observed in the long run, not instantly. It is recommended to apply the concentrate once a week or a fortnight late at night or early on the morning.

Over half of the users awarded this product with five stars, although some feel suspicious about the fact that not all ingredients have been listed on the label. Judging by the customers’ feedback, adult June beetles are also well treated with it. One of the users shared their experience: “I had a problem with insects getting at my herb and vegetable plants last year. My basil and tomatoes were completely destroyed. I have sprayed my plants a few times with this neem oil (mixed in a spray bottle with water), and my plants have not had any bugs.”

Price: Check the current price

4. Bayer Advanced 700740S 24 Hour Grub Killer Plus, Granules

If you would like to speed up the process and remove larvae faster, use Bayer Advanced granules with the active ingredient trichlorfon. The manufacturer promises that the product will help remove pests over an area of 5000 square feet within 24 hours.

However, in this case, you will be dealing with a less safe product. Moreover, trichlorfon use is restricted in a number of states. The treatment cannot be used in the kitchen garden or on edible plants, fruits and vegetables. Also, avoid getting the substance onto the flowers’ leaves.

64% of users gave five stars to this product, while 11% only awarded it with one star. Here is what one the users commented: “The 24-hour Bayer kills grubs which is the best of the grub products that I’ve used. Best time to do this is end of August or early September.”

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission BioAdvanced 700740M 700740S 24-Hr Grub Control, 10-Pounds


$19.75 $19.77

Last update on 2020-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Price: Bayer Granules Check the current price

5. Scotts GrubEx, 5,000-sq ft against Larvae

This product’s active ingredient is chlorantraniliprole. Use it if you opt for a preventive approach. It acts for four months and can cover up to 5000 square feet.

Spray the lawn in the spring or at the beginning of the summer and irrigate the soil well to activate chlorantraniliprole. This is one of the safest preventive soil treatment ingredients. Allegedly, it does not do any harm to useful insects, although some users disagree: “It may damage some but not all of the earthworms. But it’s a whole lot better than your whole lawn getting eaten up”, says one of the customers. Half of the users gave five stars to this product. Moreover, remember that Scotts GrubEx is banned for use in the state of New York.

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission Scotts 99605 GrubEx1 Season Long Grub Killer, 14.35 lb, 5 M

By ScotchBlue

$19.48 $30.99

Last update on 2020-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Price: Check the current price

6. Dr. Pye’s Scanmask 10 Million Live Beneficial Nematodes

Steinernema Feltiae nematodes are a natural way of getting rid of larvae. They don’t kill useful bacteria and only remove larvae. These worms are sold in special shops. Before you let them into the soil, water it well and repeat once the nematodes enter the soil. You will only yield Steinernema Feltiae’s activity results after several months. These nematodes act on a 200 square feet area.

As we have already explained, Heterorhabditis bacteriophora nematodes-containing treatments are more effective than the ones with Steinnernema. Pay attention to another product, 10 Million Live Beneficial Nematodes Hb – Soil Pest Exterminator, containing Heterorhabditis bacteriophora. The same number of worms are able to cover up to 3000 square feet for a lower price.

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission Bug Sales 10 Million Live Beneficial Nematodes Hb – Soil Pest Exterminator

By BugSales


Last update on 2020-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Price: Beneficial Nematodes Hb Check the current price

Dr. Pye’s Scanmask’s competitive edge lies in the fact that it affects more insect species, namely 23, which is more than the other product can offer. users also rate Steinnernema quite high as 55% of them awarded five stars to it versus 48% of five-star ratings to the other treatment. One of the users noted: “This is the third year for our 3,000 SF organic garden and all of the crops are healthier than they have been in the past.”

Price: Dr. Pye’s Check the current price

How to Get Rid Of June Bugs At Night

There exist various bug zappers: they are small and stylish, just like the light bulb below, but they are only suitable for small insects. In our case, more powerful indoor and outdoor devices, such as the bestselling Flowtron Zapper and Insect Killer by Aspectek, are required for large June beetles.

7. Flowtron BK-15D Electronic Insect Killer, 1/2 Acre Coverage – Best Selling Bug Zapper for Outdoor Use

Here before you is an absolute bestseller among the Bug Zappers. This device has over 7500 customer reviews left by those whom Flowtron helped remove various insects including June bugs, moths, biting midges and others. It is powered from an outlet and its blue light attracts the insects. Once they fly closer, they touch an electric grid which electrocutes them. It is safe for people as the grid is covered with a plastic carcass, but it is still better to use it at least 25 feet away from people. If you approach too close, the insects’ attention will switch from the gadget to you. Moreover, when roasted, parts of insects can fly far away from the device, which is not very pleasant.

Flowtron is for outdoor use only and can cover up to ½ of an acre. It works best in the dark near shrubs and trees in calm weather. You will have to regularly remove dead insects from the grid. Turn the zapper off before you do this. Clean with a brush, small air compressor or an air can duster.

The only thing the users are unhappy with is the power cord length (1/2 foot), so you will definitely need an extension cord. Some home owners also claim that their June bugs were so large, they had to remove a couple of plastic carcass’ ribs to let the bugs reach the grid closer. Read over 10 000 reviews to learn more life hacks from other customers.

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission Flowtron BK-15D Electronic Insect Killer, 1/2 Acre Coverage

By Flowtron

$32.04 $49.99

Last update on 2020-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Price: Check the current price

8. Bug Zapper & Electric Indoor Insect Killer by Aspectek – For Indoor Use

If a cute but small light bulb indoor zapper does not seem reliable against home bugs, check out Bug Zapper & Electric. The device is scientifically proven to radiate 365 nm wavelengths attracting the insects. Once attracted by the light, the bugs are electrocuted by the electric grid. The manufacturer claims that this 2800V bulb killer is the most effective one on the market and guarantees best results.

Unlike the previous light bulb, Bug Zapper & Electric is for indoor use only. A special chain for hanging (and not only placing on the surface) the gadget is supplied. The device’s dimensions are 15.5 x 12.4 x 3.9 inches, it is easy to use, requires no maintenance apart from removing the dead insects from the bottom tray.

Users have rated the product highly as 81% of them awarded it with a five star rating. One of the buyers commented: “My wife bought this to get rid of these annoying little flying bugs. She loves it and she said it really works. We keep hearing loud zap in our apartment. I will definitely recommend.”

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission

Last update on 2020-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Price: Check the current price

9. Bug Zapper night light Dual Bright LED Light Bulb Mosquito Zapper Zapplight

This trap is a great invention allowing us to get rid of the annoying bugs without resorting to chemicals and to reduce their population on your lawn. Moreover, Bug Zapper can also protect you from mosquitoes.

The trap has day and night modes. An LED bulb will light your home or terrace at night and the blue light will attract the insects to the bug-zapping grid. It is convenient and safe for use and easy to clean, as a special brush is supplied. Moreover, it is essential that the device is energy-saving.

Most of the users approve of the gadget, although almost 20% only gave Bug Zapper one star. The device has its drawbacks. Although the trap is not intended for indoor use only, and can be used outdoors, it shouldn’t get wet – this seems to be a problem outside.

One of the users gave feedback on their purchase: “Mine is in the laundry room. I have a mess screen on door to patio and people are in and out all day. I have noticed a large drop in the amount of bugs that make it past, day and night.” Another user was not satisfied with the performance of this device as a bug trap: “Light works and the bug zapping light is cool looking but I have yet to hear it zap any bugs.”

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission ZappLight LED 60W Bug Zapper Bulb by BulbHead Insect and Mosquito Zapper Fits Standard Light Fixture To Attract and Kill Bugs On Contact

By Telebrands Corp


Last update on 2020-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Price: Check the current price

The Best June Bugs & Larvae Killers: Comparative Chart

Product Stage Type and Peculiarities
Bug Zapper LED Light Bulb Adult June Bug An LED-lamp trap for indoor use.
Bug Zapper & Electric Indoor Insect Killer by Aspectek Adult June Bug Indoor use 2800V lamp bug zapper.
Flowtron Electronic Insect Killer Adult June Bug A best-selling bug zapper for outdoor use only.
Scotts GrubEx Larvae Chemical treatment with the active ingredient chlorantraniliprole, is a preventive measure.
Bayer Advanced 700740S Larvae Chemical treatment with the active ingredient trichlorfon, is a curative measure.
Dr. Pye’s Scanmask 10 Million Live Beneficial Nematodes Larvae Natural killer Steinernema Feltiae nematodes.
Garden Safe Neem Oil Extract Concentrate Larvae, Adult June Bugs Natural killer with the active ingredient neem oil.
Bonide 195 Beetle Killer Adult June Bugs Chemical treatment with the active ingredient lambda cyhalothrin.
Bayer Advanced 502570 Dual Action Rose and Flower Insect Killer Adult June Bug Chemical treatment with the active ingredient lambda cyhalothrin.

When and How to Apply Adult June Bugs & Larvae Treatment

The success of the treatments depends on timely use of curative and preventive methods. Thus, these methods needn’t be used in the spring as you won’t achieve the necessary results at that time. At this time, the existing larvae are too big, and the new ones haven’t hatched yet. The fall is also unfavorable as larvae become large enough by mid-September. Curative methods should be applied in summer (mid-August) when the insects haven’t developed yet and are located near the soil surface. Preventive methods are to be used mid-June or mid-July before the pests hatch.

Irrigate the soil well before and after treatment. This is also valid for applying natural products, such as nematodes. Coffee cups will help you determine the amount of water required. Place them on the loan and turn the sprayer on. Once the cups are an inch filled with water, the soil is moist enough.

Before you use any treatment, make sure you read the entire manual by the manufacturer. Remember that insecticides require caution, so buy just as much as you need and never flush unused substances down the toilet, drain or water source. Treat the soil with any leftovers and never leave the products on the pavement or any other solid surface. Don’t use them when it’s windy. Only enter the treated lot after the substance has been applied on the grass and leaves have dried.

June Bug Facts And How To Kill June Bugs

June bugs, also known as the June beetle or May beetle, can cause damage to many landscape plants and be a pest to the home gardener. June bug insects can be controlled though with a few steps. Let’s look at what are June bugs and how to get rid of June bugs.

What are June Bugs?

June bugs are scarab beetles. There are several different species that are commonly called June bugs and these include:

  • Chafer Beetle
  • Green June Beetle
  • Japanese Beetle
  • Ten-Lined June Beetle

All of these pests appear roughly around late May through June, have roughly the same body shape with the oval back and pincers at the front and feed on the leaves of landscape plants.

The grubs of these insects can also cause damage to lawn and turf grass. The damage is normally large brown

areas in the grass than can be easily lifted from the ground.

All of the beetles that can be called June bugs are treated in the same way.

To treat the grubs that cause lawn damage, you can apply an insecticide, like Sevin, to the lawn and then water the lawn to get the insecticide into the soil, or you can apply Bacillus thuringiensis or milky spore to the soil to kill the June bug grubs. Grub nematodes can also be applied to the soil to kill June bug grubs.

Sevin or similar insecticides can also be applied to affected plants if the adult June bug is eating your plants.

If you are looking for an organic method for how to kill June bugs, you can build a June bug trap. Use a jar or a bucket and place a white light at the top of the container with an inch or two of vegetable oil at the bottom of the jar or bucket. The container should be open so that the June bug can fly in towards the light. They will fall into the oil below and be unable to fly away again.

Attracting small snakes, frogs and toads to your yard can also help get rid of June bugs as these are predators of this pest.

Knowing how to get rid of June bugs can make the lawn and flowers in your garden a little safer.


  • Patricia P. Cobb, Professor Emeritus, Entomology and Plant Pathology, Auburn University.
  • Kathy L. Flanders, Extension Entomologist, Associate Professor, Auburn University.

Damage caused by green June beetle grubs, Cotinis nitida L., has been increasing in Georgia landscapes, home lawns and other established grassy areas. Although green June beetle grubs prefer to feed on decaying organic matter, they can chew the tender roots of grass plants. Damage to turf and pasture is primarily mechanical because grub tunneling and movement in the soil uproot grass plants, which then dry out and die.

Description of Green June Beetles

Green June beetle adults are velvet green with orange or rust stripes along the outer margins of the wing covers. Beetles may be 1/2 to nearly 1 inch long. Peak beetle flights begin during late June, thus the common southeastern name, June bug. Fully-grown green June beetle grubs, commonly called grub worms, are also familiar sights. Green June beetle grubs are most abundant in sandy or sandy loam soil rich in organic matter.

Green June beetle grubs are different from most grub species in the southeastern United States in that they come out of the ground at night and move from one place to another. Green June beetle grubs crawl on their backs with their legs in the air. This movement easily distinguishes them from most other grubs in the soil. When disturbed the grubs curl up into a C-shape, typical of the grubs in their family, the Scarab beetles. Grubs of some related beetles, called Euphoria, or bumble flower beetles, also crawl on their backs. They might occasionally be confused with green June beetle grubs; however, bumble flower beetles are not known to cause extensive damage to turfgrass or pastures.

Green June beetles have one generation each year. The grubs overwinter in the soil. They may become active during warm winter days. Fresh mounds of trails of pulverized soil indicate fresh grub activity. Grub activity increases as the spring weather becomes consistently warmer.

Grubs pupate in cells in the soil during late April and May and remain in the pupal stage for 2 or 3 weeks. Newly emerged adults remain in the soil for an additional week or two. In most years, green June beetles leave the soil beginning in late May and continue through early August. Peak flights usually occur from June through July.

Behavior of Green June Beetles

As adults, green June beetles feed on fruits such as apples, peaches, and figs. Usually, they prefer to eat over-ripe or decaying fruit. Occasionally, adult green June beetles feed excessively and cause economic damage to grapes and small fruits.

Female beetles fly over the grass surface early in the morning and settle into the grass just after daybreak. Male beetles fly during mid to late morning. Female beetles produce substances that attract the males to them. After mating, the female green June beetle flies close to the turf or grass surface, selects a site (preferably moist, organic soil), and digs several inches into the soil. The female beetle constructs a walnut-sized ball of soil in which she lays 10 to 30 eggs. Eggs are nearly round, about 1/16 inch in diameter. Each female may lay as many as 75 eggs during a 2-week period. Eggs hatch in about 2 weeks. Newly hatched grubs are about 3/8 inch long. Young grubs begin to tunnel through the soil in search of food (organic matter). They typically come to the surface to feed.

In turf, the grubs usually leave small mounds of soil around the mouth of each tunnel. By August, grubs are large enough for mounds to be seen on short mowed turf and by mid-September on taller grass. In pastures, grubs leave trails of pulverized soil as they tunnel near the surface.

A small amount of green June beetle tunneling can help aerate the soil and be beneficial; however, extensive tunneling can be harmful. Tunneling loosens the soil and creates a spongy layer about 2 inches deep in heavy infestations. Tunneling disrupts the contact between the plant roots and the soil. This interferes with water up-take causing the plants to die.

Grubs are capable of pruning the roots of plants, particularly when the grubs occur in high numbers. In pasture situations, grazing cattle easily pull the plants growing in the loosened soil out of the ground. Weeds quickly colonize the bare patches created where a plant dies or is pulled out. Birds, armadillos, and skunks dig grubs out of turf and pastures, often causing even greater damage in the process.

A large, dark-colored wasp, Scolia dubia, is often seen flying low over grassy areas infested with green June beetle grubs. The insect, sometimes called the blue winged wasp, attacks green June beetle grubs, and is, therefore, beneficial. This wasp is blue-black in color, slightly longer than an inch. The rear half of the abdomen is brown and fuzzy, with two large yellow spots. The female wasp goes down into the soil to find green June beetle grubs. When she finds one, she stings it, causing it to be paralyzed, then lays her eggs. The wasp larvae hatch and consume the green June beetle grub. In Alabama, wasp adults are most prevalent in August and September. Under some circumstances, this insect, and some microbial pathogens, will control a green June beetle infestation.

Management on Turf of Green June Beetles

On turf, green June beetle control is site specific. In some cases, the grubs do such a good job of aerification that control is considered to be undesirable. This is especially true on rapidly growing, well-established bermudagrass that is not closely mowed. However, green June beetle mounds are usually not tolerated on highly visible areas such as highly maintained lawns or golf greens. Sod producers need to guard against this pest because the tunneling weakens the structural strength of the sod.

The following are steps for successful control on turf:

  1. Be sure you have green June beetles. Green June beetles are not the only animals that make mounds on turf. Mole crickets make mounds during the spring and fall on infested turf, primarily in the southern half of Georgia. Earthworms also make mounds, the particles of which are distinct pellets. To determine which animal is creating mounds in an area, use a mixture of 1 or 2 tablespoons of lemon-scented dish detergent in 1 gallon of water. Pour the solution over 1 or 2 square feet of the infested area. Wait a few minutes, and observe what comes out of the ground.
    • You can also verify the presence of green June beetle grubs by digging up with a shovel several samples at least 1 foot deep and 1 foot square. Sift through the soil to find any insects.
    • Identifying GJB activity (as opposed to ants, mole crickets, etc.) can be tricky, but look for tunnels about the size of your finger (bigger than a pencil, for large grubs) going straight down from the center of the mound of dirt. The tunnel will be open if it’s where the grub came up, or covered if it’s where it went back down into the ground. Soapy water will not bring the grubs up reliably, but it will get mole crickets and earthworms up. Digging is the most accurate method but also the most trouble.
    • Watch for bird feeding in turf areas, especially starlings and robins. Bird activity is a good indicator of turf insect infestations. Also, watch where green June beetle adults fly during the summer.
  2. Decide whether turf damage is severe enough or unsightly enough to justify treatment.
  3. Consider control options. The insecticides recommended for grub control in The Georgia Pest Management Handbook will control green June beetle grubs.
    • Any of the pyrethroids, and Sevin, are effective for controlling the grubs, at any size, if applied late in the day. Because the grubs come up and wallow around in the materials, they work on even mature grubs very well.
    • In most years, the best time for grub control is August through October. Treatments during early spring will probably give a lower percentage of control. Often, a second application is required.
    • If soil is dry, irrigate before treatment.
    • Make applications late in the day because grubs move to the surface during the evening.
    • Treat all infested areas. Otherwise, grubs may later move back into treated areas.
  4. Keep a history of the site. Mark a landscape map with previously infested areas. This can help in locating new infestations.
  5. Remove dead grubs if necessary. Following an insecticide application, grubs emerge from the ground the next evening and die on the turf or soil surface. Decaying grubs not only smell bad, but also may result in slick playing surfaces on athletic turf. Usually, you can remove dead grubs from athletic fields or other frequently trafficked areas with a turf sweeper such as the ones used on golf courses.

Resource(s): Insect Pests of Ornamental Plants

Reviewer(s): Will Hudson, Ph.D., Extension Entomologist, The University of Georgia.

Center Publication Number: 214

  • Author
  • Recent Posts

Latest posts by Kathy Flanders (see all)

  • Green June Beetles – September 24, 2013
  • Indian Meal Moths – September 24, 2013

The Return Of June Bugs: What This Means For Your Facility

The term “June Bug” is a bit of a misnomer as it appears at other times in the year and is also sometimes referred to as a May Beetle. That being said, the “June” bug can make its appearance anywhere from May to early July with the heaviest occurrence taking place in the month of June. The June Bug is a nocturnal beetle that hatches from a larvae in the springtime of the year. The female will lay from 60-75 eggs underground. After about 18 days, the eggs hatch out and the newly hatched larvae spend the next nine months going through three stages of larval growth and finally emerge in the spring as a newly hatched June bug. The larvae are a delicacy to a variety of mammals including skunks, moles and birds. Fishermen also love using them for fish bait.

Even though the June Bug is nocturnal, it is attracted to bright lights. They will gather around security lights, well-lit windows and porch lights. This over exposure to light is believed to sometimes kill the June Bug and they are very often found lying dead the next day under lights and brightly lit windows.

While the June bug is not known to be of any danger to humans, they do pose problems and can be a nuisance to business owners. The beetle is quite noisy as it flies around bright lights and, to some people, can even be a little frightening. This flying, buzzing pest is especially annoying to business owners whose customers try to enter a brightly lit commercial facility.

Other problems created by the June bug affect the commercial real estate outside the building. The June bug can be very destructive in defoliating trees and shrubs. Again, the June bug is nocturnal and eats the leaves of your favorite trees and shrubs during the night and then disappears during daylight hours making it difficult to control beetles. The June bug performs additional damage in the larval stage of growth as they attack the roots of lawns and farm crops.

Copesan can provide commercial pest control solutions that can take care of all sorts of pest problems, including the June bug. It is possible to place beetle traps around bright lights to catch and dispose of the adult bug. However, any other means of eradication must be directed to the larvae, sometimes referred to as white grub. It must be determined as to whether there are enough larvae present to justify treatment with an insecticide. Copesan’s local experts can guide you through this process. For more information on Copesan services, contact us today!

What, exactly, are June Beetles?

Written by Joe Ballenger

@BugQuestions Nothing in particular, it is just you provide helpful advise prior to them attacking me (trying to get to my floodlight).. 😛

— intrepid wanders (@intrepidwanders) May 28, 2015

Since it’s June, I’ve been getting a lot of questions here and at work about June Beetles. They’re really common, show up about this kind of year and just kind of hang out on porches. I think of them a little bit like the summer version of Christmas decorations , but they’re small, brown and, well…constantly engaging in X-rated activities.

So what are these things, why do they get on your porch, and how do you get them to stop doing that?

June Beetles are Scarab beetles which appear in large numbers at this time of year. There are two general types-big and small for now-which seem to suddenly appear about now and then vanish about a month later. Both are from really big groups which consist of a couple hundred species apiece.

Cyclocephala sp, also known as the Masked Chafer, is one of the more common June Beetles.
Picture courtesy of K Schneider via Flikr
License info: CC-BY-NC 2.0

The small ones are from the genus Cyclocephala, also known as masked chafers. As larvae they’re lawn pests known as ‘white grubs’ and commonly feed on grass roots and thatch near the surface of the soil. They take two years to grow from egg to adult, so those beetles you see every year are actually about toddler-aged. The adults don’t feed, so if you suddenly see a lot of damage to flowers then it’s not these guys.

Phyllophaga sp, also known as the May Beetle is also one of the more common June Beetles.
Picture courtesy of Anita Gould via Flikr.
License info: CC-BY-NC 2.0

The big ones are from the genus Phyllophaga, and are sometimes called May Beetles depending on where you are. They’re about twice the size of the smaller Cyclocephala. They take about 3-4 years to grow to adults, so the ones you see on your porch are probably the same age as a preschooler. Like the masked chafers, these June Beetles feed on roots of plants and can cause damage to a wide variety of plants.

So why are they on my porch?

June beetles are attracted to lights, and you’re likely seeing both boys and girls down there. Females attract males and mate before they start flying, although…we’ll just call them overly enthusiastic…males may mate with them again if the opportunity strikes.

A lot of insects get disoriented by light at night. They go towards the one thing they can see which is a big, blinding ball of light. This is really useful to us as entomologists, because it allows us to reliably catch a lot of insects. To insects, however, it can be a fatal mistake. They get concentrated in one area, which makes them a boon for predators. The stress of being stranded and exposed during the day eventually ends up killing them.

Entomologists checking out the black light at the Jean Lafitte Bioblitz in March 2013.
Picture credit: Joe Ballenger

Fortunately, June Beetles are extremely common and they’re not in any danger of going extinct. Unfortunately, a lot of insects are susceptible to light pollution…which is another story altogether. It’s still worth mentioning, though.

How do I get them to stop coming to my porch?

This is where things can get a bit complicated. June Beetles, both types, are lawn pests and spend most of their lives under your grass. If you take care of your lawn, you’re already lowering the population by controlling lawn grubs. There’s all sorts of stuff which is designed to kill white grubs, and those are the babies of June Beetles. So taking care of your lawn will keep their populations down.

Insects can’t see very well in the yellow-red spectrum, so a lot of porchlights glow with an orange light which doesn’t attract bugs. It won’t eliminate insects, but a white light will have a lot more bugs around it.
This porchlight is right outside of Joe’s apartment, and has a tragic lack of insects flocking to it.

However, there’s only so much you can do. If your neighbors aren’t as diligent as you, then they’re breeding these guys without realizing it. There are also all sorts of wild areas where these guys breed, since they have a huge range of plants they can eat. So, while you can control their numbers a little bit…there’s not a whole lot you can do by treating them yourself.

A much easier control method is to simply reduce the amount of insect attracting light around your house at night. If your front door has blinds, draw them and make sure they’re shut.

You can also get lights for your front porch which don’t attract insects. Many insects have difficulty seeing in the red-yellow part of the color spectrum, so you can buy lights which shine mostly in this spectrum. They’re only a couple dollars at your local Wal*Mart, and are well worth the money if you don’t want to sweep off your front porch at this time of year.

What if I…kind of like beetles?

Of course, if you want to attract some really cool bugs there are a lot of instructions online for building your own mercury vapor light set. Mercury vapor lights spit light light out which covers the widest amount of the light spectrum, and you can also build a UV light set for very cheap to augment this.

The supplies for this blacklight set can be obtained from Wal*Mart for less than $50. It works pretty well, but not nearly as well as a mercury vapor light.

They can be very pricey but if you’re willing to take the time and money to set it up, you’d be amazed at what you’ll find in your area.

Just…don’t forget to turn it off when you’re done. The bugs will really appreciate it. 🙂

How To: Get Rid of June Bugs


If you’ve ever been out on a summer evening outdoors only to be startled by an inch-long, slow-flying beetle crashing into you, then you’ve encountered a June bug. The four most common of these members of the scarab family are the green iridescent Japanese beetle, the green June beetle, the brown-and-white, ten-lined June beetle, and the brown chafer beetle—and, despite their name, they’re active in adult form from May through July. The way they clumsily flit around can seem kind of comical, but June bugs are no joke to your lawn and garden.

As adults, they feast on the leaves of trees and shrubs—roses are a particular favorite—leaving ragged holes in foliage. But their larval form, called a grub, does the most damage. White grubs live in soil and feed off the roots of plants, especially grass. The result is large brown patches of dead lawn that easily separate from the soil in chunks or mats of turf. You’ll typically see the damage during the late summer when the grubs are most active underground. To ensure that June bugs are the culprit, simply lift up a section of dead grass: If you see the slightly curled white grubs in the soil underneath, you know who to blame!

Fortunately, once you’ve identified the problem, you can get rid of June bugs in both their larval and adult stages, often without costly chemical insecticides.

MATERIALS AND TOOLS Available on Amazon
– Molasses
– Large jars
– Garden gloves
– Dish soap
– Garlic
– Mineral oil
– Plastic spray bottle
– Birdbath (optional)
– Shallow dish (optional)
– Terracotta pot (optional)
– Insecticide for June bugs
– Nematodes
– Bt liquid concentrate or powder
– Grub insecticide with neem oil


Female June bugs lay eggs in the grass in mid-summer, so destroying the adults before they get a chance to do so will not only help your shrubs look better this season, you’ll have a head start on a healthier lawn next spring.

Set a trap overnight: To attract and effectively drown June bugs, pour one-half cup of molasses into an empty milk jug or large jar, add one-half cup of hot water, then cover and shake well. Bury the open jar near rose bushes or other plants that the little buggers fancy, leaving only the neck of the jar above the soil. Check the trap each morning and dispose of any drowned beetles. Refill the trap as necessary.

Catch them by hand: Since these pests generally move slowly, it’s fairly easy to get rid of June bugs by plucking them off shrubs and then drop them into a jar of soapy water to drown them. Be sure to wear gloves when hunting June bugs. Although they don’t bite, some species have sharp spikes on their legs that can scratch.

Make a natural insecticide: Kill Japanese beetles and other June bugs with a safe, do-it-yourself insecticide. Mix four cloves of minced garlic with one tablespoon of mineral oil and let sit overnight. Then strain out the garlic bits, add the garlic oil to a pint of water, and mix in one teaspoon of mild liquid dish soap. Put two tablespoons of this concentrate into a pint spray bottle, fill with plain water, and spray directly onto June bugs and any plants showing evidence of their munching.

Attract predators: Many insect-eating birds, toads, and snakes enjoy a good meal of June bugs. Encourage these visitors by providing water—a birdbath for birds, a shallow dish of water for toads and snakes—as well as safe spots for your foraging friends to hide when necessary. Birds appreciate the cover of shrubs and trees, while toads and snakes prefer a damp, cool, shady spot to hide in the heat of the day. A terracotta pot slightly tipped up on its side works well as a toad or snake house.

Try a commercial insecticide: If natural methods fail, there are insecticides that kill adult June bugs, along with most other destructive garden pests. As these products generally also kill beneficial insects, it’s best to try natural methods before resorting to them.



While adult June bugs can wreak havoc with roses and other shrubs during their brief summer fling, it’s the grubs that will get your grass. Lose the larvae with the following methods.

Don’t mow too low: Female June bugs like to lay their eggs in short grass, so you can discourage them by not mowing your lawn too short. Keep the grass at least three inches tall during their early-to-mid-summer active season.

Let nematodes fight your battle: Beneficial microscopic worms called nematodes attack and kill June bug grubs in your lawn. You can purchase nematodes at most large garden centers. Just mix as directed, spray your affected lawn, and let the worms work their magic.

Bring on the bacteria: Bacillus thuringiensis, usually abbreviated as Bt, is bacteria that infects and kills many garden pests, including June bug grubs, yet is harmless to humans and pets. You’ll usually find Bt sold as a liquid concentrate or a powder to spray or sprinkle directly onto affected plants and turf. You might need to reapply Bt weekly if the infestation is heavy.

Apply insecticide: If the above methods don’t do the trick to get rid of grubs, there are potent insecticides that will. Many are made from neem oil, which kills many types of larvae but is generally safe for beneficial insects like bees and ladybugs. If a neem-based insecticide fails, there are stronger—but more toxic—pesticides to try. Apply these late in the summer, when the grubs are still close to the surface of the soil. Once winter arrives, the grubs will burrow deep underground, where a pesticide is unlikely to affect them.

In the late springtime you may notice large numbers of brown and iridescent green beetles around your lawn and garden.

These are June bugs, also known as June beetles or June bug beetle.

The brown variety are usually present in greater numbers, while the green variety (also known as scarab beetles) are a bit less common.

Generally speaking, you see these brown bugs at night swarming around your porch light or streetlights.

Scarab beetles are out during the day.

Although they appear quite different, these two types of beetles are closely related.

Both species of beetles begin their life cycles as grub worm under the lawn or garden soil.

At larval stage, they are called white grubs or white grub worms.

What do June Bugs eat? As white grubs they grow and thrive by feeding on the roots of plants.

When they emerge in the spring time (usually during the months of May and June) they move on to do moderate damage to your flowers, veggies, grass, shrubs and trees.

Related Reading

  • Best Natural Pest Control Solutions For The Home And Garden
  • Getting Rid Of Japanese Beetles
  • How To Control Blister Bug Beetles
  • Controlling Figeater Beetle Infestations

In this article, we will answer some frequently asked questions about June bugs and provide some tips to help you cope with them. Read on to learn more:

June Bug Questions & Answers

#1 – Where Do June Bugs Live and Are Most Commonly Found?

You’ll find June bugs all across North America and in many other locations around the globe.

They are most common in very warm areas, and they are quite abundant in the US southern states.

#2 – What Does A June Bug Look Like?

Brown June bugs are about an inch long and they are oblong. They have plain brown, hard wings.

Their bellies are usually yellowish or greenish. Being insects, they have six legs that have rough, hairy protrusions.

Green June beetles are actually rather attractive. They are a deep, iridescent, emerald green in color. Their bellies are golden.

They are smaller than brown June bugs, and they are almost pentagonal in shape.

Their bodies are rather flattish, whereas brown June bugs are more rounded.

#3 – Do June Bugs Bite or Hurt You?

June bugs don’t bite. You will almost never encounter the green ones as they are fewer in number and don’t tend to swarm about.

When you walk through a lighted area at night in a warm climate, you are very likely to encounter dozens, if not hundreds, of brown June bugs.

They may bumble into you, and they may crawl on you and feel strange but they will not bite you or hurt you.

#4 – What Is The June Bug Life Cycle?

June beetles live a very short time. After they emerge from the soil in late May and June, the adult beetles live for only a couple of months.

During this time, the females may lay as many as 75 eggs, and therein lies your problem!

Those 75 eggs hatch into grubs that live in the soil underneath your lawn or garden for almost a year.

What do June bug do as grubs during the year? They happily munch away on the roots of your plants.

This is especially irksome if you are trying to grow root crops such as potatoes and carrots.

If you have a heavy infestation of June bug grubs, you may even see your turf grass begin to peel up from the soil as the roots are chewed clean through.

June bug larvae predation will also damage other flowers and plants in your yard.

In fact, they may quickly lay waste to your vegetable seedlings when you put them out in the spring time.

If you have an especially heavy infestation of June bug larvae, you may find that the ground underfoot in your yard feels very spongy.

This is because these grubs tunnel vigorously in search of new food.

#5 – What sort of damage to adult June bugs do?

As adults, June beetles don’t actually do much damage. They do feed on some tree leaves (e.g. oak and walnut).

They may also feed on moss from tree barks leaving unattractive dead spots in their wake.

The main damage they do is simply to reproduce. As noted, a single female June bug can lay as many as 75 eggs a year.

75 multiplied by the number of June bugs currently in your yard is a whole lot of June bugs!

Female June bugs usually lay eggs in the late summer.

The grubs over-winter in the soil and metamorphose into beetles when the weather warms up in the spring.

#6 – What eats June bugs?

Irritating as they are, June bugs are an abundant source of protein for many wild critters.

This is both a curse and a blessing, depending upon your situation.

Instead of asking – What attracts June bugs? Ask What do June Bug insects attract?

Take note – if you have lots of June bugs and June bug grubs in your yard, your space will be very attractive to wildlife such as:

  • Box Turtles
  • Armadillos
  • Possums
  • Gophers
  • Skunks
  • Moles
  • Toads

Most of this wildlife is beneficial, but some can cause you problems.

For example, gophers, moles and armadillos can lay waste to your lawn by digging burrows looking for June bug grubs.

Toads, box turtles and possums, on the other hand, are beneficial.

While possums can be somewhat problematic if they take up residence in your attic or under your house, toads and box turtles are entirely beneficial.

Having them in your yard and garden is a very good thing, indeed.

It goes without saying – it’s best not to attract skunks to your yard because of their tendency to spray when frightened and because of the very real danger of rabies.

It is worth noting that possums almost never contract rabies.

In fact, you can count the number of documented cases ever on one hand.

This is because possums have a very low body temperature that will not support the rabies virus.

June beetles also attract meat-eating birds such as Blue Jays, mockingbirds, crows, owls and others.

If you have chickens, they will certainly enjoy your June bugs. Common lizards and geckos also feed on June bugs, as do most reptiles.

#7 – Can the June bug insect be dealt with entirely naturally?

If you want to attract wildlife to your yard, you may not consider June bugs to be a problem.

A healthy population of native wildlife in your yard may establish a very good balance and keep your June bug numbers controllable.

It is also possible to reduce the number of grubs in the soil by introducing nematodes.

These very tiny, structurally simple creatures live in the soil and are parasitic to June bug grubs and other insects or pests that are also soil dwellers.

Having healthy population of nematodes in your soil can help keep your June bug grubs under control.

To use nematodes, purchase them online or at your local garden center and follow package directions to introduce them to your soil in the late summer at about the same time female June bugs lay their eggs.

Another natural substance you can introduce to your soil is called milky spore.

This is a bacterium (Bacillus popillate– Dutky) that combats all lawn grubs organically.

It will not only reduce the numbers of June bug grubs in your soil, it also works against Japanese beetle larvae, maggots, flea larvae, cut-worms and more.

#8 – Should you use pesticide to control June bugs?

While it is certainly possible to enlist a pest control company or to spray poison all over your yard yourself, this is the least desirable way of controlling June bugs.

When you poison June bugs and their larvae, you also poison beneficial flora and fauna in your yard.

You endanger your own health with exposure to pesticides, and you run the risk of polluting the water table and waterways with runoff from pesticides.

However a couple of options. Apply Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) to control the June bug grubs in the lawn. And according to pest

“To kill recently hatched grubs, choose an insecticide product that contains clothianidin, imidacloprid, thiamethoxam or chlorantraniloprole. These products should be applied any time from late July to early September. Timing matters because these ingredients aren’t as effective if applied later in the fall when the grubs are larger. Apply the insecticides too early, however, and it will wash away before the grubs are even present.”

#9 – Is there a safe way to directly control June bugs?

You can deal with the damage you see and with the individual June bugs you see on a case-by-case basis.

When you see damaged plants and grass in your yard, take positive and specific steps to remove damaged organic matter.

  • Eradicate any June bug infestation you may see
  • Amend the soil and replace the plants

Seek out brown June bugs in your yard in the early morning hours when they are subdued after a night’s activity.

Collect them and dispose of them by either dropping them in hot soapy water or, if you have chickens, giving your hens a feast!

You can also reduce the numbers of June bugs in your yard by keeping your grass mowed a little bit higher throughout the hot summer months.

Tall grass discourages adult June bug females from laying eggs. They prefer to lay their eggs in very short grass.

Keeping your grass a little bit taller will help it to retain moisture and reduce the amount that you need to water.

Wet grass is also attractive to June bugs, so by keeping your grass longer you discourage them in multiple ways.

Focus On Controlling June Bugs Rather Than Eliminating Them

No matter how hard you try, you will never eliminate June beetles.

You could poison every existing adult and every grub on your property this year and new ones would just come along and take their place next year.

Rather than opting for elimination, focus on establishing a balance, attracting beneficial wildlife and being vigilant in keeping your June bug numbers under control.

source: 1 | 2

Why are June Bugs Called June Bugs?

The nights may be growing shorter with the upcoming arrival of summer, but your outdoor lights may be busier than ever. That’s because it’s June bug season.

What are June bugs?

The name “June bug” refers to any of the 100 species of beetles that are related to the scarabs familiar from ancient Egyptian iconography. Other common names for the June bug include “June beetle” and “May beetle.” The common June bug is one-half to five-eighths inches long and reddish-brown in color. Being beetles, they also sport shiny wing covers, called elytra.

June bugs can cause damage to gardens, lawns and pastures. They are classified as chafers, meaning they feed on vegetation, specifically leaves. Their diet can also encompass grass, flowers, fruit, food crops such as grains (wheat, corn, etc.), sap and decaying organic material. (Hence their scientific name, Phyllophaga, which is Greek for “leaf eater.”) June bugs are nocturnal. They feed from dusk through the evening hours in order to avoid predators.

Where does the name June bug come from?

June bugs derive their name from the fact that adult June bugs emerge from the soil at the end of spring or the beginning of the summer.

Females bury their eggs just below the soil surface. June bug larvae hatch within 3 to 4 weeks and feed on grass and plant roots from several months to as long as three years. In spring and early summer, these larvae — also known as grubs — grow into pupae. Within 3 weeks, these pupae mature into adult June bugs.

Why are June bugs attracted to light?

Adult June bugs are generally harmless. But because they are attracted to light, they can make spending time on your porch or patio unpleasant. Even light from your home’s interior can attract June bugs in large numbers. The sound of June bugs bumping and buzzing against window screens is closely associated with summer in many parts of the United States.

Scientists are still undecided on the precise explanation for this behavior. Several hypotheses have been advanced, but no single theory can account for why so many different nocturnal insect species gravitate to sources of illumination.

How can you help keep June bugs in check?

If you detect the tell-tale signs of a June bug infestation, such as dead patches of grass or damaged plants, you may have a problem with ground-dwelling June bug larvae.

An effective method for helping control June bugs is to make your lawn inhospitable to their larvae. You can help maintain a healthy lawn by overseeding thinned-out areas of your turf.

Don’t let these bugs bring your June down!

Next > The Life Cycle of a Beetle

Can you believe June is already? This is the perfect time for us to talk about a certain pesky bug – the “June bug.”
With many names, often referred as May beetles or June beetles, June bugs are seen in the spring and summer. The common “June bug” title is actually given to more than 260 species of scarab beetles genus Phyllophaga with similar traits and behaviors.

June Bug Facts
June bugs have a one-year life cycle. Females lay their eggs mid summer, and larva hatch into grubs about 18 days later. The grubs molt twice during the winter months and and third larval stage lasts nearly nine months, before adults appear in the late spring.
They can be anywhere from 0.5 inches to 1.5 inches long and are typically black or brown. They are most active at night and are drawn to your light sources.
June Bug Damage?
The good news: they are harmless to people and pets. June bugs don’t bite, sting, or spread disease.
The bad news: adult June bugs feed on trees and shrubs, and can cause quite a bit of damage to your landscaping. Even more harmful are the grubs, who live underground and feed on your plant roots, harming plants.
So What Can You Do?
If you’re already seeing adult June bugs, it’s likely too late to do anything very helpful. Preventative measures can be taken to eliminate larvae and the presence of adult June bugs for the next season, but using products to eliminate adult June bugs can cause even more damage to your plants and lawn. Treating your lawn in the fall is the best approach since this is the time the female begins laying her eggs.

You can try to introduce predators like birds and toads as a natural way of dealing with them. Make sure you have low sodium lights since June bugs are active at night and they are attracted to lights.

As part of our Platinum Program we perform a preventive treatment to the exterior of the home that creates a barrier that addresses crawling insects. This along with changes to exterior lighting will assist in keeping encounters to a minimum.

What else can you expect to see in June?

Bees and the rest of the busy pollinators will be out.

Photo via Jason Altenburg

What’s That Bug? Cotinis nitida, the Green June Beetle

A number of beetles are known as ‘June Bugs’ and most of them get this designation for appearing in the month of June. Cotinis nitida is a large bronze and metallic green beetle that is often seen in June and July flying in low, lazy circles just a few inches above lawns or turf grass. They don’t sting or bite and are not dangerous to humans, but they are not a ‘nice bug’.

The adults are sometimes called ‘Fig-eater Beetles’ because they love the soft and easy to break skin of figs. They also like any soft fruit and can be quite destructive in peach orchards and berry patches. They use the small horn-like protrusion their foreheads to break the fruit’s skin and then eat unsightly holes as they feed. Most of the time, folks can simply cut insect damage away from the fruit and use it, but these guys secrete a substance that permeates the fruit and makes the whole piece have a bad odor and taste. They’re considered a minor pest in eastern North America and more so in the southern part of the U.S., even though they are pleasantly associated with summer, sweet tea and lazy afternoons in literature and lore. Those of us in the South consider them simply another part of summer. They make a bumbling drone as they fly similar to a bumblebee and generally appear when the summer has reached its peak. We do have a fondness for tradition here and they appear in poems, songs and stories throughout our reigon.

The grub or larval stage of the Cotinus nitida is considered a pest as well. The immature beetles are destructive to lawns and turf grass. These large white grubs do not actually eat the roots of the grass, but their burrowing habits undermine the root systems. They are easily identified because they do not use their legs to crawl. Instead, they turn on their backs and motivate with their tiny, useless legs in the air. They feed on decaying organic matter. If they become a destructive enough pest in your area Penn State recommends using Steinernema spp. and Heterorhabditis spp. as a non chemical means of control. These are insect-parasitic nematodes that infect the grubs and cause them to die. There is also a species of digger wasp that uses the grubs as food for their larvae, so let them go about their business if you see them working. There are chemical controls available as well, but as long as the insects are not causing extensive damage, I’d personally prefer for nature to take care of itself.

Some people may confuse these with another metallic green beetle…the dastardly Japanese Beetle, Popillia japonica. Japanese Beetles are far more destructive and are a non-native species. (Cotinis nitida is native to North America) It is easy to distinguish between the two. The Japanese Beetle is much smaller (about 1/2″ long, 12.7mm) and has a series of white dots along the outside edges of its body. Cotinis nitida is a very large beetle (nearly 1″, 90mm long) The image at left is a Japanese Beetle and it has a much different appearance than the June Beetle.

Cotinis nitida isn’t usually present in enough numbers to be a serious threat to gardens or agriculture, however localized concentrations of the beetle might prove annoying and controls needed. I have them every summer and they can be seen flying their low, lazy circles above my yard. I have never felt it necessary to use any type of pest management on them though. They leave my apple trees alone and I’ve not noticed any damage to my grass. I have a “live and let live” philosophy and as long as they’re doing no harm, I choose to do likewise.

Grub image courtesy of Wikimedia commons

Sources used in this article:

Univeersity of Arkansas

Penn State University

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

What are June Bugs? How Can I Get Rid of June Bugs?

Summer nights are often a blend of relaxation and careful defensive planning. On one hand, you want to enjoy the warm weather with a cool drink on the back porch swing. On the other hand, there’s a legion of bugs to worry about. One of the most troublesome bugs – at least for a few weeks each summer – is the so-called June bug. These large and clumsy beetles are attracted to nighttime light, so they can be a pest to any outdoor evening activity you have planned.


The term “June bug” isn’t a scientifically assigned name. Instead, it’s a common name applied regionally to a variety of different beetle species. The six most common are:

• European Chafer Beetle (Rhizotrogus majalis) – This invasive beetle is found throughout temperate latitudes of North America. It has a caramel brown colored back and measures a little more than ½-inch in length.

• Green June Beetle (Cotinis nitida) – A beetle with a green body that measures up to an inch long. Its primary range extends from Maine to Georgia.

• Japanese Beetle (Popillia japonica) – An invasive beetle with a brown and green metallic sheen. This beetle is considered an agricultural pest to a variety of crops, including tomatoes, strawberries, roses, raspberries and corn. It measures a little over a ½-inch in length. Unlike most other beetles called June bugs, the Japanese beetle has a daytime activity cycle.

• Figeater Beetle (Cotinis mutabilis) – A beetle with a green, metallic coloration primarily found in the southwestern U.S. This beetle can be about 1¼ inches long.

• Ten-Lined June Beetle (Polyphilla decemlineata) – This beetle has white and green stripes on its back, giving it a watermelon look. It measures up to 1¼ inches long and makes a hissing noise when touched. It’s found west of the Rockies and its larvae are considered an agricultural pest.

• Phyllophaga (More than 260 individual species) – This group of beetle species are all very similar and often called May beetles, May bugs, June bugs and June beetles in their local range. They are usually dark, reddish brown in color, chubby and measure a little more than 1⅓ inches long. Other than their brown color, they have very few markings.


There are many beetles that share the June bug name, and they have many common attributes that make it easy for people to lump them together under that label. In general, June bugs are:

• Active at Night – June bugs are generally nocturnal. They spend their nights feeding on plants and breeding.

• Not Aggressive and Do Not Bite – June bugs don’t bite people and they have no real interest in us. However, when they land on you, the spines on their legs can deliver a slight pinch.

• Attracted to Nighttime Light – In many June bug species, only males are attracted to lights. In others, both genders are drawn to nighttime light. In fact, a June bug may exhaust itself by continuing to fly into a light until daybreak. This behavior often means you’ll find several June bugs attached to window screens.

• Fairly Large and Plump – Most of the beetles called June bugs are considered large for a North American insect and are usually round and plump. Their size makes them a favorite midnight snack for a variety of animals, including mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles.

• Clumsy Flyers – June bugs are not very skilled aviators. They tend to bump into objects and usually fly in wide, lazy arcs.

• Soil-based Larvae Called White Grubs – The larvae of many species of June bugs are considered lawn pests. The grubs, which are white and comma-shaped, often target the root systems of grass and other delicate plants. These immature beetles are usually called white grubs by landscapers and gardeners without referring to a specific species. A variety of animals actively seek out white grubs for food, often digging up lawns in search of them.


June bugs will make their presence known in your yard in a number of ways. First off, you’ll see them at night in the spring and summer, regardless of the actual month. They often congregate in areas close to lights or on windows where indoor light is visible. You may also find evidence of these bugs by the brown spots in your lawn – the grubs underneath can kill off plants by eating their roots, an action that will leave brown patches in the grass. You may also uncover grubs whenever you dig into your lawn. These curled grubs are usually immediately evident in the soil as you sift through it. Many animals are skilled at finding buried grubs and they actively hunt them by digging through a lawn. Most of the insects called June bugs also do some amount of damage to the plant life in your yard. Among them, the Japanese beetle is the most obvious since they are usually active in the day as they swarm in search of food.


June bugs and their grubs can be a problem for your plants and lawn. Beyond that, adult June bugs can also be annoying when they cling to your window screens and buzz about porches and other outdoor areas. Here are three methods to get rid of June bugs:

  1. Hand Pick from Plants – If you see some June bugs chomping on your favorite plants, it’s easy to hand pick them off the plant and drop them in a bucket of soapy water. The water mixture will kill them. Since June bugs don’t bite, you don’t really need to worry about that. Be aware that many have spiny protrusions on their legs that can poke you.
  2. Swat the Adult June Bugs – For the June bugs that cling to your window screens at night, you can swat them with a fly swatter.


Are June bugs climbing your window screens right now? What are you doing to get rid of them? Let us know in the comments below or share a picture of them with Safer® Brand on Facebook. If you’re having a bug problem and need some advice on the best Safer® Brand product to use, reach out to our consumer care team to get your questions answered. You can also subscribe to the Safer® eNewsletter for more articles like this one and special offers on our products.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *