Big green flying beetles

forget_me_not72(z7OK)July 12, 2005

I have been invaded by big green flying beetles. They are all over my ornamental pear trees and my carolina jessamine and my althea bushes. Can anyone tell me what they are ??? I've tried going outside but they chase me around along with the wasps and the bumble bees. The only safe time is at night. I've already been stung once this week by who knows what and it caused my whole hand to swell so I don't want to get bitten/stung by anything else. Thanks in advance for your answers.


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Did the beetles look like this?

    Bookmark   July 12, 2005 at 4:10PM
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Japanese Beetles. Ever see the grubs (big fat white worms, with a brown head) when you dig up the ground? They are the larvae of both the June Bug and Japanese Beetles (same family).


    Bookmark   July 12, 2005 at 10:40PM
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That's them !! Thanks for your help.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2005 at 11:00PM
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Here is a comprehensive source of information about the Japanese Beetle. Good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: USDA Information about Japanese Beetle Control

    Bookmark   July 13, 2005 at 6:57AM
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Maryl zone 7a

The picture of the beetle above does not look like a Japanese Beetle. The beetle above is also known as the Fig beetle and I've had a few of them flying around for the last 3 years or so. Japanese Beetles are on the march westward and have been reported in Arkansas, but so far they haven't made it to Oklahoma. In large numbers the Fig Beetle can do damage to plants. In my yard I've never seen more then a couple, so haven't experienced any damage. I'm sorry to hear you've been stung. It's never pleasant, but that's life in the great outdoors. Some people experience life threatening episodes when stung by bees etc. If you are one of those you may want to see your doctor about allergy shots.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2005 at 3:07PM
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broken_lady(z6 ok)

Brenda, I have one question, do you have perfume on when you go outside? Not a good idea. That includes deoderant,shampoo,etc. Another thing, don't wear clothes with flower prints. lol
Also it would be a good idea to have ammonia handy when going outside. It deletes the venom or whatever bugs have. If you don't have ammonia, use mud, it draws the stuff back out if applied quickly. My mother was highly allergic, got stung by a wasp, the only thing handy was Windex with ammonia. I sprayed the bite, then took her to the ER just in case but she did not have a severe reaction that time. A friend's daughter was stung and starting to redline, I put mud on the sting, within five minutes she was fine, did not have to see DR. I just love old remedies.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2005 at 4:16PM
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I try to wear light colored clothes, too! This is to avoid having the wasps and bees try to pollinate me, like when I used to wear solid reds and purples.


    Bookmark   July 14, 2005 at 8:13PM
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I have been invaded !!!! I live in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Area. These bugs are crazy. I have caught about 200 of them so far. They do not seem to be dangerous though (stingers, pinchers & such). My dogs seem to like them. I am going to take them fishing with me. They're shiny !!!

    Bookmark   September 16, 2005 at 5:37PM
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The green June bug or May beetle is often confused with the much smaller Japanese beetle. Fear not. The green species is simply more active by day, whereas its cousin, the brown June bugs, are nocturnal.

Susan, the Jap beetle has bronze portions, where the GJB has only metallic green trimmed in brown. The GJB is also much larger. I've been seeing a few of these beautiful beetles flying around at work.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2005 at 6:52PM
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I am infested with these beetles right now, only in my dog run. The run is 70 x 30 and I have vines along the fence, along with althea and mandavila and a large blue vine. My son said they were bees and was afraid to mow the dog run. On closer inspection and patience, I saw that they were not interested in flowers that much and were about 1 x .8 cm. in size and buzzzzzz when they fly by. Is there any way to control these? Can they harm a human? How long do they last? It is September and they appeared hear in South Alabama 2 weeks ago.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 11:44AM
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The Japanese beetle HAS made it Oklahoma, at least here in the eastern part, as those who read my posting on the traps know. We caught at least 2 gallons of the things.

The large June Beetles have been here for years. Fifty years ago or more my cousins and I caught them, tied strings around them, leaving the wings free, and turned them loose to fly circles around our heads.

The smaller May beetles used to come to the porch light at night and cling to the screen door. When we saw them we knew it was time to put the yellow bug bulb in the fixture.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2008 at 2:03PM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7


Go back up this page to the link given by Wise 1 and click on the line that says "USDA Information on Japanese Beetle Control". That link provides info on how to control them.

As far as I know, they do not bite or sting or otherwise harm humans or domestic animals, but they sure can chew up your plants.

Once the beetles are out and about, they are hard to kill except by trapping them. As she stated earlier, Dorothy has used Japanese Beetle Traps this year with great success. You'll have better success controlling them in their larval stage--when they are in the ground (including underneath lawn grass) as big fat white grub worms. You can treat the ground organically with Milky Spore Powder, which is a natural disease that targets them, or you can treat the ground chemically. I imagine the appropriate chemical treatment is discussed in the USDA link above.

I can't tell you how long they last, as it varies but I suppose they are active for several weeks to a couple of months, depending on your climate and also depending on whether you have any predators that prey upon them.

Also, you might want to ask this on the Alabama forum here at Garden Web, since gardeners there might be able to tell you specifically how long their flight lasts in your region.

I've linked a trap similar to the one Dorothy used this year.

Good luck,


Here is a link that might be useful: Example of Japanese Beetle Trap

    Bookmark   September 15, 2008 at 3:29PM
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We've had hordes of the Green June bugs, every year, since we moved to Tahlequah in 2005. Last year was the worst. Yet I have seen very little damage from them. I do like catching them for our ducks. The ducks think they are like potato chips! I simply crunch them enough so they cannot fly and gather enough, in a coffee can, to make a nice treat for the ducks. Chickens and turkeys also like them. It's fun to watch the birds running around the yard, chasing June bugs.

I thought they'd disappeared for this year. But in the last week we've seen a few more.


    Bookmark   September 16, 2008 at 11:08AM
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I know what a California june bug is. Some are brown. Recently, I found out that the big black flying insects we thought were Bumble bees were beetles instead. Myth was that if this big black bumble bee stung you, it could knock you out. I found out recently that it's a beetle and has no stinger. A lot of people I talk to still beleive it's a bee and run for cover. I've been all over the internet but haven't been able to idenify it. It looks black when in flight, but on the ground it sort of greenish. Would anyone happen to know which type it could be.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 7:03PM
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I'm raising a thread from the dead. This is the first year I've experienced these large green flying beetles. They're invading a new double weeping peach tree that I finally had success, after several attempts, transplanting a volunteer from another area of our yard. I don't want to lose this tree to these darn bugs.

Can someone tell me how Dorothy created her own Japanese flying beetle traps?


    Bookmark   July 20, 2014 at 3:02PM
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I think it was in either 10 or 11 that I bought 9 Japanese beetle traps right before we took a week's vacation to California. When we returned they were all full, each holding almost a gallon of beetles. I learned that we had lured beetles from a mile's radius all around us. But that was OK because we live surrounded by almost 100 acres of pasture land and that's where they like to lay their egg. And there is no way to treat that much ground. The next year I was able to buy just the replacement lures. I cut part of the top off a milk jug, leaving the handle and part of the threads. I carefully threaded the bait into the jug with two fingers and pressed the sticky tape against the wall of the jug. You have to open the jug enough to get your fingers into it, but not enough so the beetles can get back out. (They don't usually try to come UP once they are down.) I poked a couple small holes in the bottom for drainage in case rainwater got in and hung the traps on fences and from low tree branches. They worked very well. You can also buy Japanese beetle traps at farm supply stores. Atwoods may have them. We still have beetles, but not nearly as many as in years past. I hung one trap this year and it is less than 1/2 full. We have also handpicked a couple hundred, throwing them into soapy water.
BUT if what you have is actually Green June Beetles, the traps may not work anyway. (June beetles are twice the size of Japanese beetles and all green where Japanese beetles are green and bronze.) We have them (June beetles) as we always have had, but not in any large number.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2014 at 6:20PM
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Thank you Dorothy. I will look at Tractor Supply and see if they sell traps. These bugs are large and bright shiny green. They bounce off our windows so hard they sound like rocks hitting the panes. I don't know why they're mainly hanging out in the peach tree unless it is secreting sap or such to entice them. Regardless, they're frankly "grossing" me out with their dive - bombing tactics while I'm working in my backyard. Thanks again for the info.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 4:50AM
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