Some, such as the green June beetle, are more brightly colored. These are the most common in New England. This is the stage that lets them molt from grubs to adult beetles. Like it? In 3 to 4 weeks, small grubs (larvae) hatch from eggs and develop through three stages (instars), with the first two stages lasting about 3 weeks. ), and the green June beetle (Cotinis nitida Linnaeus). Photograph by Paul M. Choate, University of Florida. Learn which plants thrive in your Hardiness Zone with our new interactive map! Stehr FW. The common life cycle of the more destructive and abundant of these beetles extends over three years. Figure 1. It is in the grub stage that these insects do the most damage by feeding on grass roots causing the grass to die. After pupating, an adult emerge, and there you have your beetle. Beneficial nematodes seek out and kill all stages of harmful soil-dwelling insects. White grubs and their allies: a study of North American scarabaeoid larvae. The greatest damage to crops occurs the year after the appearance of the adults. In late June or early July, according to Cornell University, beetles begin to leave the ground and feed on other bugs and plants. (1998). Females can lay up to 75 eggs in their short adult life. Adults bury themselves under the dirt during the day, reports the University of Missouri. These grubs then form oval earthen cells and pupate. Woodruff RE, Beck BM. A pyrgotid fly, a natural enemy of white grubs, Phyllophaga spp. This stage of the beetle life cycle is where the greatest change in form takes place. They have extremely fast metabolisms, and eat nearly constantly. During the spring, damage is more apparent than root damage during the fall. The fully grown larva color is glassy yellowish white shading toward green or blue at the head and tail. Adult beetles are nocturnal bugs and do not appear during the day, making detection difficult. June bugs, also called May or June beetles, go through a life cycle that spans one to three years. The most commonly encountered white grubs are the larvae of June bugs, European Chafers, Masked Chafers, Billbugs, Oriental Beetles and Japanese Beetles. This commonly happens in the southern region allowing for two cycles to progress annually. They grow exponentially and molt twice before moving on to the next stage of their life cycle. The greatest amount of damage occurs as the larvae move near the soil surface to feed on the roots of the plants. Larvae: The length of the larvae varies from 20 to 45 mm. Immature Insects (Volume 2). Damage to the lawn is not easily recognized at this stage. The larva is a specialized feeding stage that looks very different from the adult. The European chafer beetle originated in continental Europe but is now an invasive species found in temperate climates in North America, where they are often called June bugs. Inoculating the soil with bacterial spores of Bacillus popilliae Dutky and Bacillus lentimorbus Dutky aids in reducing populations. Typical white grub of the genus Phyllophaga. The last abdominal segment is clear, allowing dark digested material to be seen. Figure 5. Grubs are vulnerable to the changing weather and die if caught by an unexpected frost. Larval June bugs feed in warm summers and under the soil during winter. At the second instar larvae burrow into the soil. pp. As an adult, I feed at night and eat vegetation, usually the leaves from trees and bushes. Adults are medium to dark brown. White grubs. June bugs are commonly seen in many areas in the United States, as well as other regions of the world which facilitate their living conditions. Adults emerge from pupae in about 3 weeks. The larval stage persists for two to three years. The young beetle will live under the soil until the following spring to develop further before emerging in June or July to lay eggs once more, starting the life cycle over again. Phyllophaga larvae and other larvae of the family Scarabaeidae are often referred to as white grubs, including larvae of the Japanese beetle (Popillia japonica Newman), annual white grubs (Cyclocephala spp. The next autumn the larvae again migrate deep into the soil to overwinter, returning near the soil surface the following spring to feed on plant roots until they are fully grown in late spring. Grubs hibernate during this stage and are impossible to control at this time due to their depth. This results in drought susceptibility and the ability to easily pull the grass away from the soil surface. For this cultural practice to be effective, plowing must occur before the grubs migrate below the plow depth. (no longer available online). The large grubs of the chafer feed on the roots of both wild and cultivated cool-latitude grasses, which has made them a critter-non-grata on North American lawns. Within 13 (a 13-year-old cicada) or 17 years (a 17-year-old cicada) in the soil, the mature nymphs emerge and climb right onto some vertical surface or nearby vegetation. As they grow and feed in July, the females begin laying a series of 60 eggs under the soil. Larvae are white with a C-shaped body, brown head, and three pairs of legs. Scarab beetles generally lay their eggs in the ground, in dung, or in other decomposing materials including carrion. The female will lay from 60-75 eggs underground. June Bug. My Home: Found all over North America, I hide in trees during the day. As adult beetles, we swarm in great numbers in early summer, usually at dark and are strongly attracted to lights.. What I eat: As a larva, I live underground and eat the roots of grasses and other plants. The June Bug is a nocturnal beetle that hatches from a larvae in the springtime of the year. Jaques HE. It then enters into the ‘pupal stage’ which can take up to 9 months and usually happens over the winter period. Some species of larvae need more than one year to develop, so they hibernate in the soil again once the weather drops in the autumn. … Grubs feed close to the surface of the lawn and are most vulnerable to chemical control with pesticides at this time. June bug larva stage The grubs will grow to about 40 mm (1.6 in) and are white with a brownish-black head and brown spiracles along the sides of the body. Eggs hatch about three weeks later into young larvae that feed upon roots and decaying vegetation throughout the summer and, in autumn, migrate downward (to a depth of up to 1.5 meters) and remain inactive until the following spring. Once larvae have overwintered, they move again to the surface for a brief feeding period before becoming a fully developed adult in September. Grubs feed close to the surface of the lawn and are most vulnerable to chemical control with pesticides at this time. Meanwhile, the grubs or larvae that started life early in spring begin to emerge as lawn foraging beetles. Some, such as the green June beetle, are more brightly colored. 1966. It's during this period when the larvae pupate. The worm-like larvae form the pupa or cocoon as it often called, then lay dormant. Share it! Take a look at the life cycle and characteristics of this mini-beast, and also read some interesting facts about it. These stages are marked by the grub molting, or shedding its outer skin after growing a new one underneath. Insect Pests of Farm, Garden, and Orchard. The Life Cycle of Scarabs Like all beetles, scarabs undergo complete metamorphosis with four stages of development: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. 1991. How to Know the Beetles. All Rights Reserved. They are small, spherical, pearly white eggs that darken just before hatching. If you want to attract wildlife to your yard, … pp. Life Cycle of the European Chafer Beetle. After developing into the third and final instar stage, fully mature larvae are typically 25 mm in length and ready to pupate. The egg hatches and the fly larva enters the body cavity of the beetle, feeding on and eventually killing the host before pupating. June Bug Grubs. Also, Cordyceps fungus infects the grubs. Grub will feed until the temperature begins to drop in autumn. 241. The grubs burrow deep underground to survive the winter. Metcalf RL, Metcalf RA. Most beetles pass through 3 – 5 stages during the larval period and some can even have up to 30 stages whereas other beetles can have only 1 stage as larvae. They can be used to control a broad range of soil-inhabiting insects and above-ground insects in their soil-inhabiting stage of life. Photograph by James Castner, University of Florida. The larvae will molt twice before winter. Bulletin of the Entomological Society of America 19: 92-94. After hatching, the first instar is 5mm long. Since the adults are attracted to trees to feed, they tend to lay most eggs in the higher portions of sod near wooded areas. June beetle larvae, called white grubs, are about 25 mm (1 inch) long and live in the soil. Most adults are yellow to dark reddish-brown to black, robust, oblong, glossy beetles. They feed on foliage and flowers at night, sometimes causing considerable damage. After two to three weeks, grubs hatch. After feeding for several weeks, they lay their eggs in the ground. McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc. New York. No-tillage or reduced tillage crop management encourages grub populations. Adult Beetle. During this stage, the larva begin to take the shape of the adult beetle. The ideal conditions are green healthy, irrigated lawns. However, the distribution of individual species usually is more restricted. The pupa is usually white, faint yellow, or dark brown in color. In spring and early summer, white grubs pupate 3 to 6 inches deep in the soil. Two parallel rows of spines seen on the underside of the last abdominal segment distinguish true white grubs from similar-looking larvae. Lawn grubs are a common pest of the home lawn. Grubs are the larval stage of the European chafer, June beetle (June bug) and/or Japanese beetle. The year following heavy flights of May beetles, planting corn or potatoes should be avoided in fields that were previously under sod or grass. Grubs often feed into August, when they change into their second stage of growth. C. Brown Company. Larvae are characteristically C-shaped with a white body and tan to brown head. If corn or small grains are present, every effort should be made to keep the field free of grass and weed growth to reduce the number of beetle eggs laid. Larva (Larval Stage) As with many beetles, lightning bug larvae look somewhat wormlike. The adults mate in the evening and, at dawn, females return to the ground to deposit 15 to 20 eggs, 1 to 8 inches deep in the soil. More than 200 species of insect pests from 100 insect families are susceptible to these insect predators. Now after 4-8 weeks of chomping away under ground, the larvae will pupate. Late spring or early autumn plowing destroys many larvae, pupae, and adults in the soil and also exposes the insects to predators, such as birds and skunks. pp. Adult Japanese beetles (June bugs) typically lay eggs in lawns in June. Topics covered include biology of the bug, lawn grub damage and control of white grubs (the name used to cover the larval stages of destructive beetles such as June Beetles, Japanese Beetles, Chafers and others.) Phyllophaga spp. 1989.The Scarab Beetles of Florida (USA): (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) Part II. Adults: May beetles are about 12 to 25 mm long. Grubs often feed into August, when they change into their second stage of growth. Grubs feed close to the surface of the lawn and are most vulnerable to chemical control with pesticides at this time. The May or June beetles (genus. They root around just below the surface, eating the roots of grass and other plants as they grow. During the first stage of growth the grubs feed on the roots of the grass in the lawn. Insecticide control of a white grub. In late June or early July, according to Cornell University, beetles begin to leave the ground and feed on other bugs and plants. The outer skin of the grub is thicker than in the fall, making chemical control at this time nearly impossible. Larvae vary in size with age and species. These white grubs are laid in midsummer in sunny areas of the lawn . Photograph by Jim Kalisch, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. The dorsal segments are flattened and extend to the back and sides, like overlapping plates. The time period to reach adulthood from the pupal stage varies dramatically among different types of beetles. The egg, larva, and pupa life cycle stages develop underground and unless soil is removed or dug into, these life stages will not be seen. Bionomics and control of root feeding insect pests: grubs and billbugs. About 75% of all insect species go through the four stages of complete metamorphosis - egg, larva, pupa, and adult. White grub, Phyllophaga spp., infected with Cordyceps fungus. Adults emerge the following spring. These products are available commercially. Scotts GrubEx, 5,000-sq ft against Larvae. At this stage, it’s possible to have both adults and larvae feeding on your lawn and if the problem is ignored, dead lawn patches quickly appear. Kendall/Hunt Publishing Co. Dubuque, Iowa. White grubs are the slug-like larval stage of many insects. Dubuque, Iowa. Pupa: The length of the pupae varies from 20 to 24 mm long. Firefly larvae produce light and are sometimes called glowworms. Figure 6. The last larval stage remains in the soil from the fall through spring. Larvae which pupate early enough will emerge in late in the summer. Larvae develop through 3 larval stages (instars) where they grow then shed their exoskeleton (a process known as moulting) at each stage. Destructive and Useful Insects: Their Habits and Control. Figure 8. Parasitic wasp larva feeding externally on white grub, Phyllophaga spp. Tashiro H. 1973. As they grow, they feed on the roots of the grass, causing large patches, browning and otherwise ruining the appearance of the lawn grass. Larvae feed on plant roots, carrion, or dung, depending on the type of scarab. During the years of heavy May beetle infestation, deep-rooted legumes, such as alfalfa or clovers, should be planted. True white grubs are the larvae of May beetles (also called June Beetles) found in the genus Phyllophaga, of which there are over 100 different species. John Wiley and Sons. Typical June beetle, adult of white grub, of the genus Phyllophaga. New York. Fortunately, there are just a few basic larval types and they are relatively easy to recognize. North Carolina Corn Information. The adult beetles emerge from the pupal stage a few weeks later, but they do not leave the ground. 378-385. Eggs: Eggs are usually 1.5 to 3 mm in diameter and found encased in soil aggregates. Rolston LH, Barlow T. 1980. IDENTIFICATION: White grubs are the larval stage of May or June beetles. In the late summer and fall of their third year (or second year in the case of Phyllophaga tristis), larvae begin pupating in the soil. The larvae feed on the ground and pupate in the grub cell where they stay over the winter. Most adults are yellow to dark reddish-brown to black, robust, oblong, glossy beetles. The hind portion of the abdomen is slightly enlarged and appears darker due to the soil particles showing through the body wall. Photograph by John L. Capinera, University of Florida. Larvae are white with a C-shaped body, brown head, and three pairs of legs. The River Bug on the Black Sea at midsummer brings down some thin membranes that look like berries out of which burst a four-legged caterpillar in the manner of the creature mentioned above, but it does not live beyond one day, owing to which it is called the hemerobius. Oregon State Monograph Studies in Entomology 4: 1-219. Adults:May beetles are about 12 to 25 mm long. During late spring and early summer, the overwintering generation of beetles dies. This is how the grub gets bigger, and it typically happens over the course of two years, depending on the life cycle length of the species. Grub is a term used most often to refer to the larval stage of one of three beetle species: the European chafer, June beetle and Japanese beetle. The heavy-bodied June beetles vary from 12 to 25 mm (0.5 to 1 inch) and have shiny wing covers (elytra). Figure 3. This product’s active ingredient is chlorantraniliprole. Adult green June beetle, Cotinis nitida Linnaeus. An understanding to the life cycle of this insect will be of importance to those responsible for its elimination and control. Once ready, the grubs dig down into the soil to below the frost line, where they go into a third stage of life. Although white grubs can be a problem every year, the most serious damage occurs in regular three year cycles. Grubs are the larval stage of the common May or June beetle or the Southern masked chafer. Adult beetles emerge from the ground at the end of spring or start of summer. Because the grubs have destroyed the roots the grass pulls back easily. Grubs feed now for between four and six months. 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. 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. Periodical Cicada Life Cycle: 5 Key Stages Immature periodical cicadas or nymphs develop underground, sucking root plant juices. June bugs’ larvae are whitish, C-shaped grubs that live underground. The Phyllophaga life cycles vary somewhat because some species complete their growth in one year, while others require as much as four years. 1979. WM. 1993. Pupa. During the first stage of growth the grubs feed on the roots of the grass in the lawn. The larval stage is when June bugs are the most harmful to lawns and gardens. Photograph by James Castner, University of Florida. Adults do not feed on turfgrasses; however, in their larval stage, they tunnel through the soil and feed on plant roots. Davidson RH, Lyon WF. The larval stage is the most destructive stage of the insects. Green June beetles can be found in the eastern part of the United States. Some species of larvae need more than one year to develop, so they hibernate in the soil again once the weather drops in the autumn. Damage to the lawn is not easily recognized at this stage. At the end of summer during its final instar, the grub digs deep into the soil so it is protected from cold weather. 1951. Grubs begin to feed again, this time more aggressively. Adult Japanese beetle, Popillia japonica Newman. The grubs have excessively high appetites and feed constantly. Lawn grubs are a common pest of the home lawn. The beetles overwinter in the soil, emerging the following year in May or June when feeding, mating, and egg-laying take place. Pest problems? Over the course of the next two years, larvae pass through three stages (called instars) becoming larger and more destructive with each stage. Natural enemies that control these white grubs include parasitic wasps and flies in the genera Tiphia and Myzinum (Hymenoptera: Tiphiidae), and Pelecinus polyturator Drury (Hymenoptera: Pelecinidae), and the fly, Pyrgota undata (Diptera: Pyrgotidae). Photograph by John L. Capinera, University of Florida. The hind portion of the abdomen is slightly enlarged and appears darker due to the soil particles showing through the body wall. During the first stage of growth the grubs feed on the roots of the grass in the lawn. Observing Japanese beetles feeding on plants is quite common since the adult beetle feeds on about 300 species of trees, shrubs, ornamental, and fruit trees, in … A pelecinid wasp, a natural enemy of white grubs, Phyllophaga spp. Copyright Leaf Group Ltd. // Leaf Group Lifestyle. Two parallel rows of spines seen on the undersi… In late March and April, grubs move back up to the surface of the soil. June bug larvae are small white grubs with brown heads. Larvae:The length of the larvae varies from 20 to 45 mm. Can the June bug insect be dealt with entirely naturally? Figure 7. Ritcher PO. During their last larval instar the June bugs dig deep into the soil to shield themselves from freezing winter temperatures. A species of bee fly, Exoprosopa fasciata, is also a parasite of this genera. During the larval portion of their life cycle, June bugs go through three separate instars, or stages. 126-128. Figure 4. In late March and April, grubs move back up to the surface of the soil. In the southern United States, the name green June beetle is applied to a similar green-and-brown beetle that, in the adult stages, feeds on ripe figs and other fruit. Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →, University of Illinois Extension: White Grubs in Lawns, Cornell University: A Grub's Life: Egg to Beetle, University of Missouri Extension: White Grubs in the Lawn. 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