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Thursday, June 30, 2005

The Green Dive-bombers of summer, more likely

The LA Times Home section has an interesting article on Cotinis mutabilis or what we call the June BUg or June Beetle here in Southern California.

This time of year, as fruit ripens in commercial orchards and many backyards, these huge, bumbling beetles take flight. While they don't bite or sting, their sheer size is enough to freak you out as they bang into fences, tress and anything else that gets in their way.

We get a few each year, mainly from our compost pile, but when we had an old apricot tree, it was thick with these beetles. The Squirrels had a nasty habit of nibbling on the fruit and then abandoning it. The smell of sweet juice attracted the beetles in droves.

The article contains lots of information and 3 references for even more.

Their summer flights of fancy By Emily Green, Times Staff Writer

June beetles spring to life, their bright green armor shining as they steer a shaky course. They're not the prettiest of beetles, but you can't help but admire such short-lived determination.


Blogger Jenn said...

Our 'June Bugs' in Michigan are russet colored.

Your green June Beetle is Cotinis nitida?

The one I'm familiar with is in this photo... I think it's Phyllophaga crinita.

5:45 AM  

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