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Ohio State University Extension


Identification of White Grubs in Turfgrass

Agriculture and Natural Resources
David J. Shetlar and Jennifer Andon, Department of Entomology, The Ohio State University

Ohio White Grub Raster Patterns

Correct identification of white grub species is important in determining management strategies and timing of controls. The raster pattern is the arrangement of bristles and hairs on the underside of the tip of the abdomen. A 10x hand lens is needed to see this pattern on most mature white grubs. A microscope may be necessary to view smaller grubs or the Ataenius raster.

A long white larvae with an orange head and six legs and an arrow pointing to its tail. A shiny yellowish orange larvae with thin red hairs. A yellow larvae with orange patches and thin hairs.
A yellowish white larvae with small short hairs and greyish purple patches. A white shiny larvae with small red hairs. A yellow larvae with orange patches and thin red hairs.
The top of a yellowish-clear larvae with long brown hair-like pieces at the top. A yellow shiny larvae with short brown hair-like pieces at the top. A white shiny larvae with short dark hair-like pieces coming from the sides.

Ohio White Grub Adults

Ohio has many species of scarabs which have larvae (white grubs) that commonly attack the roots of turfgrasses and/or ornamental plants. By being able to identify the adults which are active in an area, one can expect to find their resultant white grubs. 

A shiny reddish purple beetle with long skinny legs and 2 antennas that branch off into more antennas. A yellow and green beetle with short legs and 2 antennas. An orange shiny beetle with long skinny orange legs and 2 wide antennas.
A beetle with an orange body and black head, with white spots on the bottom. A shiny orange beetle with a wide oval head and long legs. A yellowish-orange beetle with a brown head and 2 antennas that separate into more branches.
An orange shiny beetle with an oval body and yellow antennas. An orange beetle with brown patches, a small reddish-brown head and brown antennas. A shiny purplish-black beetle with yellow lines down the body and yellow spots on its head.


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Originally posted Mar 8, 2012.