So, you need to get rid of June bugs that are buzzing around your patio, yard, and possibly even in your house.
This guide is a comprehensive tutorial that’ll cover all that and more.
This contains proven, natural, (some) organic, and DIY effective methods for eliminating June bugs from your property.
By the time you’re done reading this, you’ll have a good understanding of how to get rid of this pest for good.
Of course, you can also skim through this as a reference using the table of contents to quickly jump to the section you’re looking for.
Sound good? Let’s get rid of the June bugs.
Last updated: 1/21/21. This guide has been updated for accuracy.
What’s a June bug?
June bugs are large and obvious beetles that are often found during night time lightning in the summer.
As their name easily shows, they’re most often found in June, as often get confused with “May bugs.”
Their official name is actually related to 6 different types of scientific names. The term “June bug” is just an umbrella name that covers all of the official names.
The most common types of June bugs are the following:
- Green June Beetle (long green body, up to 1”, often found from Georgia to Maine)
- Phyllophaga (often called May beetles or May bugs, dark coloration, about 1.4” long)
- Japanese Beetle (green, metallic sheen, feeds on fruits and veggies, about 0.3” long)
- European Chafer Beetle (0.6” long, caramel/black colored)
- Ten-Lined June Beetle (white and green coloration, 1.25” long, hisses when touched)
So when you say “June bug,” you’re literally meaning any of the above.
Although the approach to get rid of them varies depending on which specific June bug you have, for the most part, the following DIY remedies should help you get rid of any type of June bug.
You can learn more about them here.
Other names for June bugs
There are also multiple names for June bugs:
- May bugs
- Green June bug
- Japanese beetle
- June beetle
- Southern masked chafer
- Green June beetle
Those are the most popular names for this pest, although there are more than 100 species of scarab beetles just in the state of Texas, for example.
They’re all beetles, so using an approach that gets rid of beetles should get rid of June bugs.
However, you should definitely try to ID the type of Junebug you’re specifically dealing with for further knowledge, as this may help going forward.
June bug anatomy
The June bug species range from ½” to ⅝” long and are commonly black/red.
They have three pairs of limbs, with one pair behind the first three segments on the head.
The legs are slightly lighter in color and they have a segmented body dividing them into three sections with a divided wingspan that’s clearly visible on the back of their body.
The grubs, or myphone, are about 1” long and are “C” shaped with the cream-colored appearance and a darker coloration for their head segment.
June bug life cycle
June bug adults mate during the springtime and then females will dig about 3” under the soil line to lay eggs.
One thing to note is that the female adult June beetles are actually less attracted to light sources than males. They gather around the lights during this time to mate, so that’s how they all find each other.
After mating, the female will lay her eggs and deposit them.
The eggs hatch within 3-4 weeks and grubs emerge, which then feed on plant roots. The grubs develop and morph several times, with the larval stage finishing them off in the soil from fall through spring.
During early summer, the grubs will pupate 3-6” below the soil line and adults will emerge within 3 weeks.
When do June bugs come out?
As their name states, they’re mainly seen during the summer months of June, at night.
They’ve also been spotted during May and sometimes July, but they’re typically most active during those warm summer nights in June when everyone is outdoors barbequing, partying, or just having a good time.
They become a pest when they start buzzing around your lights and crawling all over your food.
This is when people really start to take notice of these bugs and start looking for ways to get rid of them.
That’s probably also why you’re here- to find ways to rid these buggers.
Can June bugs fly?
Yes, they can fly. But they’re not really good at it.
You may have seen them flying around at night and constantly bumping into things. They also bump into random things even after they’ve landed and are walking.
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By nature, June bugs are just extremely clumsy pests.
You’ll often hear them buzzing around at night during a warm summer evening.
They’re attracted to any light source, such as street lamps, patio lights, pathway markers, security lighting, and pretty much any type of lighting you can put out.
If you keep your home’s doors or windows ajar during May or June, you’re just asking for trouble. They’ll swarm into your home and buzz around the lights.
Can June bugs see?
Yes, they can see, but they’re still clumsy organisms.
Even though they can fly and walk, you’ll often find them walking or flying into objects over and over.
They’re not too bright at all, but this makes it easier to kill or get rid of them overall.
Do June bugs stay out all night?
June bugs are nocturnal and are most often found active during the night.
You may see some during the day and buzzing about, which means they were disturbed or looking for food or shelter.
What are June bugs attracted to?
June bugs only want two things:
If you have either of those in an area that has a June bug population, they’ll likely hover around your home.
June bugs crave any source of light during the nighttime. In fact, they buzz around lights so much that this is actually a way they kill themselves- from spending too much time around lighting.
This explains exactly the reason behind waking up to find dozens upon dozens of June bugs on your deck.
Do June bugs bite?
No, June bugs don’t bite humans. Just plants.
Even though they’re HUGE and make those scary buzzing sounds, they won’t bite you. You may jump at the sight of one bumping into you, but it won’t hurt you.
Some June bugs will hiss or jump when provoked, but they don’t bite humans.
Their mouths are too small to grip around our skin surface tissue, so there’s no way they can bite us.
However, note that they do transmit disease and bacteria upon contact, so that’s always another reason to not directly touch them and always wash your hands if you have to touch one.
Are June bugs dangerous?
To humans? No. They’re harmless and they don’t bite. They also don’t sting.
To vegetation? Yes. They’ll gobble up your plants like no other.
However, some species of June bugs will emit a hissing sound when provoked.
You should definitely not handle them regardless because they can transmit bacteria and diseases upon contact.
They may have walked in some other bacteria or parasite and can transmit this to you, although this is not common.
Be mindful of touching June bugs
If you happen to have them land on you, your food, or somehow they get inside your home, be sure to take proper precautions and clean up all the surfaces they touch.
And dispose of your food if you suspect a June bug has come into contact with your dish.
June bugs are dangerous to vegetation. They’ll eat up fruits, vegetables, and other various plants.
The larvae they leave behind after mating also eat up plant roots for a source of nutrients. Thus, for gardeners, June bugs are a real pain.
The grubs will eat up plant roots and harm plants directly this way, and they’re harder to see since they live among the dirt.
And then they’ll turn and morph into adults, which then eat your trees, shrubs, and other various plants. They’re a nightmare for vegetation.
How do you kill June bugs?
There are many ways to kill June bugs, but I’d advise against them if possible.
June bugs are a necessary part of the ecosystem to maintain balance, but if you have a ton of them, there are ways you can get rid of them without killing them, such as using DIY natural repellents.
However, if you need to kill June bugs, there are many ways you can do, such as the following methods:
- Use a shop vac, which will grind them during the suction process. For all unkilled bugs, you can add a mixture of pesticides to the chamber.
- Use large bug zappers
- Set up DIY June bug traps around your garden
- Pick them off by hand, and dispose of them accordingly
- Use natural pesticides on your fruits, vegetables, and plants (of course, don’t consume these plants)
- Squash them with a swatter
June bugs don’t emit any odor when squashed, unlike stink bugs, but that doesn’t mean they won’t make a huge mess.
Since they’re relatively large bugs, they’ll definitely leave behind some guts if you squish them.
When do June bugs go away?
June bugs will naturally go back into “nature” and seemingly disappear from your yard or house after the summer months are over, so typically around fall.
This is their mating season, so that’s why they’re present. After this season is over, the eggs have been laid and they’ll retreat and scatter all over again.
The reason why June bugs seem to “appear” out of nowhere is that during the summer, they congregate around lights to mate, bringing huge swarms out of nowhere.
After mating season, the beetles are more “dispersed” so you don’t notice them as often, even though the population remains about the same.
A lot of the June bugs do get killed during mating season as they hover around light sources and actually kill themselves from too much exposure to light.
They’re just not too bright.
How to keep June bugs away from lights
The best solution would be to turn them off.
But if that’s not a solution that’s practical for your purposes, you may want to do any of the following:
- Use screening around lights (a safe distance away from the source)
- Dim the lights when possible and don’t use full luminance at all times
- Shut your blinds or patio curtains
- Don’t use lights that aren’t absolutely necessary
- Limit light exposure where June bugs can detect the source of the light
- Use lights with barriers (such as glass or built-in “fencing” around the bulb)
- Replace the bulbs with less natural colors (bright white, 6000K)
- Use other light alternatives (candlelight, etc).
Get rid of June bugs naturally
There are plenty of ways to get rid of June bugs naturally and this section of the guide covers them.
Feel free to use as many as you want, as most of these DIY methods are cheap and can easily be done at home. Definitely try out combos and see what works best for you.
Do bug zappers kill June bugs?
Yes. Because bug zappers emit LED light, which June bugs are naturally attracted to, this will draw them in and instantly zap them.
This approach works very well for June bugs, however, these are large pests, so you’ll need a large zapper to accommodate them.
A bug zapper proves to be effective against June bugs as long as you position the zapper isolated from other sources of light so they’re only drawn towards the zapper.
And be sure you choose the right sized zapper, as you’ll need a larger one.
How to get rid of June bugs on peach trees
June bugs and peach trees seem to be a common problem, as they’re particularly attracted to peaches.
You can get rid of them on peach trees by using natural repellents, such as essential oils, diatomaceous earth, or make your own DIY June bug spray.
Another thing you can do is to set up jar traps around the tree. These work well by just being placed around the peach tree and can even be used hanging on the branches.
Alternatively, you can try to attract natural predators to the peach trees, such as birds, rodents, and snakes, which eat June bugs naturally since they’re predators to them.
As a last resort, you can use some kind of commercial pest repellent to drive the June bugs out. There are tons of them on the market.
Opt for organic or natural repellent when possible, since you’re placing this near your peaches which you’ll consume later.
So you definitely don’t want to use something that’s not safe for humans, pets, or consumption.
Some popular choices that you may want to research are (these aren’t natural solutions):
- Spectracide “Bag-A-Bug”
- Bayer GrubKiller Plus
Again, do your research before buying.
You don’t want to use something too poisonous as this will be used on peaches.
Consider using alternatives such as insecticidal soaps, scented repellents, sticky tape, or even store-bought commercial June bug traps.
Avoid dangerous compounds when possible!
Are June bugs bad for dogs?
June bugs shouldn’t be eaten by dogs, but eating one or two shouldn’t hurt.
By nature, June bugs are disgusting and taste terrible, and your dog shouldn’t be enjoying munching on them in the first place.
Eating multiple June bugs has been shown to induce an upset stomach, vomiting, or diarrhea.
Humans have eaten June bugs and reported that they taste bitter and nasty, which could also render the same symptoms as dogs.
You should never have your dog eat them and you should stop your dog from having access to them, but if your dog eats one or two, expect an upset stomach.
Anything else or a persistent problem should be taken to the vet.
June bugs won’t bring any harm by default to dogs unless the June bug happens to be sick or has parasites. Then this may cause issues to your dog. If you notice your dog acting strangely, definitely take them to the vet.
How do you get rid of June bugs organically?
June bugs can be gotten rid of organically by a variety of methods.
These are detailed throughout this guide and you can use them to naturally and organically get rid of them. Use a combination of tactics as one or two may not work.
You’ll want to use a variety and see what works best for your situation specifically. Then take that method and scale it up.
So try out a few of these natural methods to get rid of stink bugs and see what works best for you.
June bug natural repellents
There are plenty of natural June bug repellents that you can use to get rid of them.
You can make a simple and natural pesticide at home by using the following ingredients:
- One whole garlic cut into cloves, then minced
- One tablespoon of mineral oil
- One pint of water
- One tablespoon of dish soap
- Cut the garlic cloves into minced garlic
- Take one tablespoon of mineral oil and mix it with the garlic
- Add one pint of water
- Add one tablespoon of dish soap
- Combine the mixture, then pour all of it into a spray bottle.
How to use:
Spray this mixture directly on June bugs, or anywhere you suspect there to be June bug activity.
You can spray this insecticide on plants, veggies, fruits, or anywhere else you notice them.
Be careful not to use this on something you or your pets may get into contact with, as this may mold and be harmful if consumed.
DIY June bug traps
There are many DIY traps you can make at home, but the easiest one seems to be using jar traps.
You can make one by getting a milk jug or large jar, then adding a cup of molasses, a half cup of hot water, and then shaking the mixture.
Place the jar wherever you think June bugs are present. Dig a hole and place the jar into the soil. Cover the jar up to the neck right above the soil line.
June bugs will be attracted to the sweet scent and fall into the jar. Then they can’t get out.
You’ll have to replace the mixture every other day to keep its effectiveness. You can also use this around lights at night.
Here’s another video showing off a June bug trap (credits to Chick-a-Woof Ranch):
You can also purchase sticky tape from any hardware store and stick where you suspect June bugs to be present.
This works best used around lights, as they’ll try to walk around the light source after they land and they’ll get stuck in the tape.
This is another common approach to June bugs, and also many other pests like:
Borax can be sprinkled around areas where you suspect June bugs to be present- including your plants, fruits, and veggies.
Although borax is a natural element, you shouldn’t consume any fruits or veggies that have been in contact with the borax.
You can also add borax to your existing traps to make them more effective.
Just like borax, you can use diatomaceous earth (DE) in the same manner.
You can sprinkle this stuff in areas to keep June bugs out, such as:
- Patio doors
- Around lighting
- Patio decks
Again, use this as needed and don’t use it where you suspect that pets, children, or humans may come into contact.
Be aware that June bugs and other species (including your pets and kids) can track this stuff around the house. So keep that in mind. Get food-grade DE if possible- organic and natural grade.
Don’t be afraid to add DE to your traps to make them more effective.
What eats green June beetles?
June beetles have many natural predators, particularly because they’re so easy to catch and offer a nutritious snack because of their size.
The most common predators are birds, snakes, and other rodents. You can continue reading for more details on how to attract these natural predators.
Other common predators of June bugs are:
- Parasitic wasps
Some of these natural predators may become a pest themselves after you attract them.
Parasitic wasps also get rid of other pests like stink bugs.
June bug predators
There are many predators that’ll gobble up June bugs, but the following are especially useful for maintaining population control.
Since many predators each June bugs, you can easily attract any of these species to your yard for some truly natural and organic pest control.
And the best part would be that you wouldn’t have to actually deal with the June bugs yourself.
You’ll just have to lay out the attractants to lure these predators to your yard.
Birds, toads, frogs, snakes, and more
There are birds, toads, and snakes that are adept at eating up June bugs.
You can use other natural predators by attracting them to your yard, such as placing a birdbath for birds or encouraging toads and frogs by using a shallow dish or pond.
Birds, snakes, and toads all need somewhere to hide during the day, so any kind of shelter you can provide would attract these predators to eat up June bugs.
For snakes, you can use natural food sources of whatever snakes seem to be native to your area and provide shelter for them, such a plant pot.
Again, this depends on where you live. Study the natural predators and see what you can do to attract to them your residence.
Nematodes will naturally eat and kill June bug grubs after they hatch on your lawn.
And nematodes are small and determined eaters of grubs. You can buy them online or at a hardware store with a nursery.
They typically require some prep time and application (spraying), but after that, they’ll eat up June bug grubs, which will prevent the next breed of offspring from ever reaching adults.
You can also use bacteria to kill June bug grubs. And it works amazingly well.
One particular soil-dwelling bacterium that seems to work very well against their grubs is Bt, AKA Bacillus thuringiensis.
These bacteria will easily deter June bug grubs by infecting then eventually killing them. Bt also won’t harm humans or pets.
You can buy Bt as a liquid form or powder form, both with easy to use applicators. You can find Bt online or at any major nursery. Use as directed.
How to get rid of June bugs in your house
June bugs prefer the outdoor life, but if one (or twelve) make their way into your home, this could be a problem.
The issue is that they’re attracted to light and whether this light emits from out on your patio or within your home, both will attract June bugs.
If they get into your house, you can simply suck them up with a vacuum or squash them.
Note that smushing them will definitely leave a mess, and you may have to clean up afterward if the stain is bad.
So don’t squish a June bug on something that you value- wait for it to fly or walk onto another surface.
However, if you have a real problem with many of them getting into your home, you may want to take alternative measures. If you must keep your entryways, doors, or windows open for June bugs during the night, they’ll definitely come in.
Here are some ways you can get rid of June bugs in your house:
- Turn off lights when possible
- Set up screen doors or replace damaged ones
- Use an indoor bug zapper
- Set up DIY June bug traps
- Use sticky tape
- Have a shop vac handy
- Seal up your foundation or any other cracks or crevices
- Have a huge fly swatter available
- Get rid of them manually
Any of these methods should help you eliminate June bugs making their way into your home. Use them as needed.
You sure don’t want them buzzing around when you’re sleeping, as they’re loud and will constantly bump into various objects since they’re so clumsy.
Did you get rid of your June bug problem?
Those are all the handy techniques, tips, and tricks I have for you in ridding your June bug pest problem.
With patience and persistence, you should be able to naturally and organically get rid of June bugs around your home, garden, or yard.
Remember, the key requires that you use multiple different combos of ways to get rid of them and stick to what works best.
If one method doesn’t do anything, try another. Keep rotating the various techniques until you find a comb that seems to be effective.
If you have any other advice or if you’ve dealt with them before, feel free to leave your suggestion in the comments and help out another!
Or if you have any questions, in particular, you can leave a comment also!
Thanks for reading!
Currently an active researcher in the pest control industry for the past 8 years- with a focus on using natural and organic methods to eliminate pest problems.
I share handy DIY pest techniques I come across here to help out others (and possibly save them from a mental breakdown).
Fight nature with nature.