ACNL Island Beetle Farming Guide

Want to make 300 bells in 15 to 20 minutes without using the stalk market or resorting to duping? Farm beetles on the island. The basic idea is that the island has a low creature spawn limit: As in, only about 4 to 5 bugs can be on the island at any time. You can increase the chance of an expensive bug spawning by decreasing the chance of a cheap but spawning. The expensive bugs only spawn on palm trees.

First off remove absolutely everything (trees, bushes, stumps and all) from the center grassy area. When you are finished, the grassy area should be bare. Next, remove the trees along the bottom of the island. These trees are way too close to the edge, making it difficult to sneak up to anything that spawns on them. This should leave you with a total of 8 palm trees, 4 per side. Now, you can do one of two things depending on your farming preference: 

  1. Leave all 8 palm trees, farm by continuously walking around the island. Pro: easy to check for and scare off hermit crabs and locusts that spawn on the top half of the island. Also makes it easy to check for large fish and shark fish, which are worth quite a bit. Con: you have to be really careful when looping back down to the bottom of the island. It’s easy to scare beetles off as they come into view.
  2. This is the method I use: Chop down the top two palm trees from either side, leaving two on the lower right and two on the lower left. Run/walk back and forth along the bottom. Pro: it’s much faster in my opinion. The bottom two trees on either side are very easy to se from the bottom of the island. Con: not very good for fishing and you still have to check the top half of the island for cheap bug spawns occasionally.

Tips and observations:

  • If you are hitting a beetle dry spell, run a circuit around the island/center and check for hermit crabs as well as other cheap undesirables. Remember that they are taking up a “bug slot” and will greatly decrease the chance of an expensive beetle spawning.
  • If I recall correctly beetles will spawn after 5pm but the best time to farm is after 7pm (locusts do not spawn after 7).
  • Golden Beetles and Horned Hercules’: Creepy slowly. Holding the stick all the way forward, even while holding down A is still too fast. If you hold it down about half way when you get within about 2 spaces, you should be okay.

If you are still having trouble catching bugs, try digging a hole in front of each tree, as the optimal bug catching distance is exactly 1 space. However, keep in mind that any hole sthat you dig will reset eventually (after about a day?). Any bananas and shells that you move will remain.

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