Japanese Beetles Migrating West

Nebraska map of Japanese beetle distribution

Japanese Beetles Migrating West April 13, 2017

A newly released map of confirmed Japanese beetle populations in Nebraska shows their westward movement from where they were first identified near Lincoln and Omaha several years ago. 

The map  is based on the 2016 survey for Japanese beetle adults conducted annually by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture. Shaded counties had established populations of Japanese beetles in one or more locations in 2016.

Japanese beetle adults can damage a broad range of plants, including many trees and shrubs planted in the landscape, such as crab apple, roses, linden trees, and many others. They also have been commonly observed feeding on corn and soybeans in parts of eastern Nebraska in the last few years.

Be on the lookout for these beetles in corn and soybeans in 2017 as they begin to emerge in late June if you are in an infested area. See this CropWatch article for more information on management of Japanese beetles in corn and soybeans.

Typically, Japanese beetles are brought into new areas with landscape trees and shrubs imported from infested areas. The root soil may be infested with larval Japanese beetles when these plants are transported to Nebraska.

In a related CropWatch article Julie Van Meter, entomology program manager and state entomologist, Nebraska Department of Agriculture, describes the regulatory programs that relate to the Japanese beetle and the monitoring program NDA conducts annually.