Dung Beetles in Tasmania

[Bubas bison: Photo, A Gregory, Mt Hicks]

The Benefits of Dung Beetles

Because dung beetles bury dung their benefits are significant;
  • Dung contains many nutrients that are lost as gas (volatilised) if left on the surface (nitrogen and carbon especially)
  • With burying the dung parasite eggs are eliminated (particularly stomach worms) and flies are unable to breed in the pat
  • Unless it is buried, dung can be washed off into local streams polluting the water
  • Deep digging dung beetles bring subsoil to the surface thereby creating more topsoil
  • Livestock don’t like to eat close to the dung (who does?), so more pasture is available
  • The dung beetle tunnels enable air and water to better infiltrate into the soil
  • The activity of dung beetles encourages other soil microorganisms (eg. earthworms utilise the dung lining beetle burrows).