Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes

Upcoming Events

Information about the 2019 BugGuide Gathering in Louisiana, July 25-27

Discussion, insects and people from the 2018 gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Photos of insects and people from the 2014 gathering in Virginia, June 4-7.

Photos of insects and people from the 2013 gathering in Arizona, July 25-28

Photos of insects and people from the 2012 gathering in Alabama

Photos of insects and people from the 2011 gathering in Iowa


Species Cotinis nitida - Green June Beetle

Green June Beetle - Cotinis nitida Clown Beetle? - Cotinis nitida Big Beetle [Cotinis nitida?] ID Request - Cotinis nitida Green June? - Cotinis nitida Green June Beetle - Cotinis nitida Cotinis nitida Cotinis nitida? - Cotinis nitida Cotinis nitida  - Cotinis nitida
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Coleoptera (Beetles)
Suborder Polyphaga (Water, Rove, Scarab, Long-horned, Leaf and Snout Beetles)
Superfamily Scarabaeoidea (Scarab, Stag and Bess Beetles)
Family Scarabaeidae (Scarab Beetles)
Subfamily Cetoniinae (Fruit and Flower Chafers)
Tribe Gymnetini
Genus Cotinis
Species nitida (Green June Beetle)
Other Common Names
Green June Bug
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Cotinis nitida (Linnaeus)
Orig. Comb: Scarabaeus nitidus Linnaeus 1764
Explanation of Names
nitida (L). 'shiny, handsome' (1)
15 to 27 mm long (2)
Large, velvety green above. Sides of pronotum and elytra are yellowish-brown. Head and tibiae metallic green (3).
Color variations
e US (TX-FL-NY-NE) (4)(5)(BG data)
Varied: near woodlands, suburban habitats with lawns.
mostly June-Sept (BG data)
Adults: Pollen; ripening fruits, especially peaches; and the fruit and leaves of many shrubs.
Larvae: roots of many plants including: grasses, alfalfa, vegetables, tobacco, and ornamental plants.
Life Cycle
"Eggs are spherical, grayish colored. The eggs are laid in soil that has a high organic content. The larvae usually emerge after prolonged rain. The larvae crawl on their backs over soil or through sod, and overwinter deep in soil. The larvae develop in earthen cells near the soil surface and pupate in the late spring of the 2nd year after hatching. The adults emerge in June – July. There is one generation a year" (6). Largely diurnal, but also comes to lights (3).
The adults can often be seen in numbers flying just inches over turf.
The larvae may be considered pests because they destroy the roots of valuable plants.

Walter et al. (1938) report, "The larvae of the scarabaeid Cotinis longitarsis (=nitidus) are often very abundant in the waste material in the lower levels of [Atta texana] nests. From 30 to 40 C. longitarsis grubs have been taken from a single chamber. They were of three sizes, possibly indicating a 3-year life cycle. This appears to be the only insect of economic importance found in the nests of Atta texana. The adults feed readily on ripening fruit and are often quite injurious. Judging by the abundance of the larvae in the ant nests examined, it is possible that these nests constitute the principal breeding place of this scarabaeid. It therefore seems possible that the control of the leaf-cutting ant might also control the fruit pest C. longitarsis." (7)
See Also
Note how the scutellum is covered by a pronotal projection in Cotinis nitida (left), but is uncovered in Euphoria fulgida (right):
Print References
Brimley, p. 207 (8)
Dillon, pp. 551-552, fig. 424--shows pronotal process, plate 54, color plate B (3)
Harpootlian, p. 116, cover, fig. 230 (9)
White, pp. 147-148, plate 8 (10)
Works Cited
1.Dictionary of Word Roots and Combining Forms
Donald J. Borror. 1960. Mayfield Publishing Company.
2.A Revision of the Genus Cotinis (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)
Goodrich, M.A. 1966. Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 59: 550-568.
3.A Manual of Common Beetles of Eastern North America
Dillon, Elizabeth S., and Dillon, Lawrence. 1961. Row, Peterson, and Company.
4. A distributional checklist of the beetles (Coleoptera) of Florida.
Peck & Thomas. 1998. Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Gainesville. 180 pp.
5.The Scarabaeoid Beetles of Nebraska
Brett C. Ratcliffe & M.J. Paulsen. 2008. University of Nebraska State Museum, Vol 22, 570 pp.
6.National Audubon Society Field Guide to Insects and Spiders
Lorus and Margery Milne. 1980. Knopf.
7.The Texas leaf-cutting ant and its control.
Walter et al. 1938. USDA Circular No. 494: 1-18.
8.Insects of North Carolina
C.S. Brimley. 1938. North Carolina Department of Agriculture.
9.Scarab beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) of South Carolina
Phillip J. Harpootlian. 2001. Clemson University Public Service.
10.Peterson Field Guides: Beetles
Richard E. White. 1983. Houghton Mifflin Company.