You’ve seen these little chunky beetles flying around when the sun starts to go down? The ones that fly about, clonking into walls, doors, windows and… everything else that gets in their way? Those are known as June Bugs, June Beetles or May Bugs.
The name “June Bug” is a common term used to describe several species of Scarab Beetles. The species shown here is the Phyllophaga, but are commonly called the “May Beetle” or “May Bug” here in The States (Not to be confused with the European May Bug, the “Cockshafer” or “Doodle Bug”).
This species fits into the same subfamily as June Bugs, and will be show as one of five species of beetles grouped within the subfamily “Melolonthinae”.
Onto the most obvious part of these bugs… They really hate direct sunlight. The adults spend the entire day underground since overexposure to light being shone directly in their face throws them off and temporarily inhibits their sight. They’ll end up crashing once they approach any form of light, natural or artificial. Once they do get back up, they have this goofy little stride in their step. I mean, if you were spinning around on your back dozens of times for a minute straight, you’d probably be a bit wobbly too!
These insects are known as chafers (a species known for being particularly destructive to plants and their roots), as are their larvae. The adults commonly feed off of trees and bushes, while the larvae will feed off of the roots. Given that they’re damaging to crops and fields, they’re a type of pest. You can exterminate them on your own using chemical pesticides, or you can find natural alternatives (natural pesticides, farm fowl such as chickens).
The larvae spend their entire life underground (Roughly two years before they enter their pupating period), digging through the dirt with their strong mandibles to find plant roots to feed on. You can spot these grubs by looking for their unique characteristics: the C-shaped body, cream/white-colored body and red/brown-colored head.