Preliminary investigations of dung removal and flight biology of the Mexican dung beetles Copris incertus in Northland (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:1983
Authors:R. H. Blank, Black, H., Olson, M. H.
Journal:New Zealand Entomologist
Keywords:Copris incertus, ecological function, introduced, Keywords: Coleoptera, Mexican dung beetle, New, Scarabaeidae, Scarabaeinae, Zealand.

The Mexican dung beetle Copris incertus Say is established on pastoral grazing land to the northeast of Whangarei city, where it is common on both volcanic (brown earth) and clay (yellow-brown earth) soils. Flights occurred regularly over the spring, summer, and autumn of 1979180 and 1980181 when rainfall was above average. Flight was considered important in the dispersal into new areas as well as in the colonisation of fresh dung. Sheep dung was more effectively buried than cattle and horse dung. The benefits of the Mexican dung beetle to pastoral agriculture in Northland appear limited by slow rate of dung removal and inactivity during dry summer periods.

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