Japanese Beetles



Japanese Beetles in the news

Save our ash trees! We could beat boring beetles 

The Cincinnati Enquirer - Jan 07 8:08 PM
Alot was said last year about the emerald ash borer's potential to devastate trees.
Weather could cause problems for syrup lovers 
The Pantagraph - Jan 08 11:46 AM
FUNKS GROVE - The mild weather in Central Illinois this winter is not so sweet for maple syrup producers.

Living with wildlife 
Times Leader - Jan 06 12:09 AM
As neighborhoods sprawl into rural areas and shopping centers claim remaining woods in cities, a new breed of wildlife emerges. Rabbits, raccoons and deer aren’t so wild any more because we’re taking away their habitats and they are learning to live among us.

1996 Volkswagen Jetta GLX VR6 from North America 
Carsurvey.org - Jan 05 9:12 AM
What things have gone wrong with the car? Power Windows broken and repaired 2-3 times each. Engine constantly requires service.

- Japanes Beetles

Here is an article on Japanese Beetles.

iJapanese beetle

Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Suborder: Polyphaga
Infraorder: Scarabaeiformia
Superfamily: Scarabaeoidea
Family: Scarabaeidae
Subfamily: Rutelinae
Tribe: Anomalini
Genus: Popillia
Species: P. japonica
Binomial name
Popillia japonica
Newman, 1841
Wikispecies has information Japanse Beetles related to:
Japanese beetle

The Japanese beetle (Popillia japonica) is a beetle about 1.5 cm (0.6 inches) Japannese Beetles long and 1 cm (0.4 inches) wide (smaller in Japanee Beetles Canada), with shiny copper-colored elytra and a shiny green top of the thorax and head. It is not very destructive in Japan, where it Apanese Beetles is controlled by natural enemies, Japaese Beetles but in America it is a serious pest to rose bushes, grapes, crape myrtles, and other plants. Japamese Beetles It is a weak flyer and drops several centimeters when it hits Japanesee Beetles a wall. Japanese beetle traps therefore consist of a Japnaese Beetles pair of crossed walls with a bag underneath, and are baited with floral Jpanese Beetles scent, pheromone, or both.

Japanese beetles have a curious, identifying defense; they lift their hind legs up in the air, even when simply approached. These hind legs are spiny, and the behavior is probably intended to ward off predators.

These insects damage plants by eating the surface material, leaving the veins in place, producing a curious, but alarming to the experienced gardener, "transparent leaf" effect on its victims.


  • 1 History
  • 2 Life cycle and control
  • 3 Host Plants
  • 4 References
  • 5 External links


Map showing the parts of the United States currently infested by Japanese beetles.

As the name suggests, the Japanese beetle is native to Japan. The insect was first found in the United States in 1916 in a nursery near Riverton, New Jersey. It is thought that beetle larvae entered the United States in a shipment of iris bulbs prior to 1912 when inspections of commodities entering the country began.

Life cycle and control

The Japanese beetle adult--an attractive pest.
A typical cluster of Japanese beetle eggs.
Japanese beetle larva.
Japanese beetle pupa

The life cycle of the beetle is typically 1 year in most parts of the United States, but this can be extended in cooler climates; for instance, in its native Japan, the beetle's life cycle is 2 years long as a result of the higher latitudes of the grasslands required for the larval stage.

During the larval stage, the Japanese beetle lives in lawns and other grasslands, where it eats the roots of grass. During that stage, it is susceptible to a fatal disease called milky spore disease, caused by a bacterium called milky spore, Bacillus popilliae. The USDA developed this biological control and it is commercially available in powder form for application to lawn areas. Standard applications (low density across a broad area) take from 1 to 5 years to establish maximal protection against larval survival (depending on climate), expanding through the soil through repeated rounds of infection, in-host multiplication, release from killed host, and infection. Typically proper application can lead to a 15-20 year period of protection.[1]

Soil-bound larvae are also susceptible to certain members of the nematode families Steinernematidae and Heterorhabditidae. As with milky spore, commercial preparations of these nematode varieties are available.

The primary natural predator found in Japan is the winsome fly (Istocheta (or Hyperecteina) aldrichi), a parasitic fly. Attempts at establishing this predator in the United States have met with limited success, primarily in New England. Alternative predators have shown some potential at serving as biological controls, such as the Spring tiphia (Tiphia vernalis) and Fall tiphia (Tiphia popilliavora) from China and Korea. Also, certain birds (such as the meadowlark and cardinal) and small mammals are significant predators on the adult form.

On field crops such as eggplant, floating row covers can be used to exclude the beetles, however this may necessitate hand pollination of flowers. Kaolin sprays can also be used as barriers.

Research performed by many US extension service branches has shown that pheromone traps may attract more beetles than they catch, and so they have fallen out of favor.[2] Natural repellents include catnip, chives, garlic, and tansy[3], as well as the remains of dead beetles.

Host Plants

Japanese Beetles feed on a large range of hosts, including leaves of plants of the following common crops:

Strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, roses, plums, pears, peaches, raspberries, blackberries

and these genera:

  • Abelmoschus
  • Acer
  • Aesculus
  • Alcea
  • Asparagus
  • Aster
  • Betula (Birch trees)
  • Buddleia
  • Calluna
  • Canna
  • Chaenomoles
  • Cirsium
  • Cosmos
  • Dahlia
  • Daucus
  • Dendranthema
  • Digitalis
  • Dolichos
  • Hemerocallis
  • Heuchera
  • Hibiscus
  • Hydrangea
  • Ilex
  • Iris
  • Lagerstroemia
  • Ligustrum
  • Malus
  • Malva
  • Myrica
  • Oenothera
  • Parthenocissus
  • Phaeseolus
  • Phlox
  • Physocarpus
  • Platanus
  • Polygonum
  • Prunus
  • Quercus
  • Rheum
  • Rhododendron
  • Rosa
  • Rubus
  • Salix
  • Sambucus
  • Sassafras
  • Solanum
  • Syringa
  • Tilia (Linden, lime, or basswood trees)
  • Toxicodendron
  • Ulmus
  • Vaccinium
  • Viburnum
  • Vitis
  • Weigelia
  • Wisteria
  • Zea
  • Zinnia


  1. ^ Klein, Michael (August 1998). Japanese beetle: the continuing struggle to achieve successful biological control. Midwest Biological Control News, V(8). Retrieved July 11, 2005.
  2. ^ Japanese Beetle control strategies [1]
  3. ^ http://www.selfsufficientish.com/pests.htm

External links

  • Japanese beetle Popillia japonica - large format diagnostic photographs, descriptions, natural history
  • APHIS web page on beetle management
Search Term: "Japanese_beetle"