June Beetles and Digger Wasps

Green June Beetle

Green June Beetle

I had several reports of large flights of the Green June Beetle this summer over the last several weeks. The males fly low to the ground actively searching for females. After mating, the females begin laying eggs in tunnels in the soil. The larvae will feed on humus, mold and the roots of plants. Larvae overwinter in soil below the frost line and emerge next summer.

Digger Wasp

Blue Winged Digger Wasp, Scolia dubia

Some larvae will fall prey to the digger wasp, Scolia dubia. These wasps can be seen flying low to the ground searching for tunnels that contain beetle larvae. The wasps enter the tunnels and lay eggs on the developing larvae. The female wasp stings a grub, paralyzing it and lays an egg on the paralyzed grub. The larva of the wasp will consume the grub during its development and emerge the next summer.

About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is an Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
This entry was posted in behavior, by jjneal, Environment. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to June Beetles and Digger Wasps

  1. Pingback: June Beetles and Digger Wasps | Entomo Planet

  2. Pingback: June Beetles and Digger Wasps | Entomo Planet

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