|Publication Type:||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication:||1998|
|Authors:||F. Hertel, Colli G. R.|
|Journal:||The Coleopterists Bulletin|
|Keywords:||Animalia-, Arthropoda-, Atta-laevigata [leaf-cutter-ant] (Hymenoptera-): oviposition-ho, Behavior-, Coleoptera-: Insecta-, Environmental-Sciences), Hymenoptera-: Insecta-, Invertebrata-, Terrestrial-Ecology (Ecology-|
In the Cerrado region of Brazil, we observed dung beetles, Canthon virens Mannerheim, using leaf-cutter ants, Atta laevigata (Smith), as oviposition sites. Aggressive encounters occurred whereby the smaller dung beetles decapitated and then buried their much larger ant victims in a specialized sequence of behaviors. Known densities of a few Cerrado herbivorous mammals suggest that the availability of dung may be similar to other neotropical sites. We propose that C. virens may be an obligate, rather than facultative, predator of leaf-cutter ants.