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Dung beetle

Bert Kohlmann, Alfonsina Arriaga-Jiménez, Matthias Rös
An analysis of vicariant speciation of Geotrupes and Phanaeus (Coleoptera, Geotrupidae, Scarabaeidae) from the mountains of Oaxaca, Mexico is undertaken. The new species of dung beetle (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) from Oaxaca, Mexico, Phanaeus dionysius sp. n. is described. Photos of the habitus and a distribution map are provided. Phanaeus malyi Arnaud is revalidated. An updated key for the Phanaeus endymion species group and new localities are also presented. An updated key for the Geotrupes of Oaxaca and new locality records are also submitted...
2018: ZooKeys
Verônica Saraiva Fialho, Vinícius Barros Rodrigues, Simon Luke Elliot
While the effects of carcass decomposition on microorganisms have been demonstrated in recent years, little is known of how this impacts necrophagous insects. A common assumption is that insects that exploit carcasses are exposed to a high density of potentially harmful microorganisms, but no field data have so far validated this. Necrophagous beetles such as the Scarabaeinae have complex nesting behaviors with elaborate parental care. So here, we begin to explore whether this conjunction of life history and nesting behavior represents an adaptive response to the threat posed by microbes in these environments, mainly by entomopathogens...
March 2018: Ecology and Evolution
Fernanda Baena-Díaz, Imelda Martínez-M, Yorleny Gil-Pérez, Daniel González-Tokman
Ivermectin is a powerful antiparasitic drug commonly used in cattle. Ivermectin residues are excreted in dung, threatening non-target coprophagous fauna such as dung beetles. This can have severe ecological and economic consequences for dung degradation and soil fertility. Even though the negative effects of direct ivermectin exposure on dung-degrading organisms are well known, effects could extend across generations. Here, we tested the effects of paternal or maternal exposure to ivermectin on offspring in the dung beetle Euoniticellus intermedius...
March 19, 2018: Chemosphere
Eva M Keppner, Manfred Ayasse, Sandra Steiger
Parental care is thought to be costly, as it consumes time and energy. Such costs might be reduced in animal parents that raise their young on valuable food sources such as dung or carcasses, as parents are able to invest in self-maintenance by feeding from the same resource. However, this might lower the nutritional value for other family members and, as a consequence, food competition might arise. To promote our understanding of the outcome of such competition, we manipulated the necessity of parents to feed from the resource...
March 23, 2018: Journal of Evolutionary Biology
Bryony Sands, Neludo Mgidiswa, Casper Nyamukondiwa, Richard Wall
Pyrethroid insecticides are widely used to control ectoparasites of livestock, particularly ticks and biting flies. Their use in African livestock systems is increasing, driven by the need to increase productivity and local food security. However, insecticide residues present in the dung after treatment are toxic to dung-inhabiting insects. In a semiarid agricultural habitat in Botswana, dung beetle adult mortality, brood ball production, and larval survival were compared between untreated cattle dung and cattle dung spiked with deltamethrin, to give concentrations of 0...
March 2018: Ecology and Evolution
Zhihong Zhang, Xiaoyang Wang, Jin Tong, Carr Stephen
A highly efficient soil-burrowing dung beetle possesses an intricate outer contour curve on its foreleg end-tooth. This study was carried out based on evidence that this special outer contour curve has the potential of reducing soil penetration resistance and could enhance soil-burrowing efficiency. A toothed wheel is a typical agricultural implement for soil imprinting, to increase its working efficiency; the approach of the bionic geometrical structure was utilized to optimize the innovative shape of imprinting toothed wheel...
2018: Applied Bionics and Biomechanics
Alfonsina Arriaga-Jiménez, Matthias Rös, Gonzalo Halffter
Insect diversity patterns of high mountain ecosystems remain poorly studied in the tropics. Sampling dung beetles of the subfamilies Aphodiinae, Scarabaeinae, and Geotrupinae was carried out at four volcanoes in the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt (TMVB) in the Mexican transition zone at 2,700 and 3,400 MASL, and on the windward and leeward sides. Sampling units represented a forest-shrubland-pasture (FSP) mosaic typical of this mountain region. A total of 3,430 individuals of 29 dung beetle species were collected...
2018: PeerJ
Ji Hyoun Kang, Chang Seob Lim, Sung Hwan Park, Sang Woo Seok, Tae Joong Yoon, Badamdorj Bayartogtokh, Yeon Jae Bae
Populations of Gymnopleurus mopsus (family Scarabaeidae), a dung beetle that displays dung-rolling behavior (i.e., a telecoprid), have recently experienced sharp declines, and many populations are now at high risk of local extinction. However, Mongolia, which constitutes a major portion of the species' distribution, still sustains a relatively large population. Here, we used mitochondrial COI sequences to investigate the within-population genetic diversity and both the genetic and phylogeographic structures of 24 G...
March 2, 2018: Scientific Reports
Erin L McCullough, Bruno A Buzatto, Leigh W Simmons
When females mate with more than one male, sexual selection acts both before and after mating. The interaction between pre- and post-mating episodes of selection is expected to be context dependent, but few studies have investigated how total sexual selection changes under different ecological conditions. We examined how population density mediates the interaction between pre- and post-mating sexual selection by establishing replicate populations of the horned dung beetle Onthophagus taurus at low, medium, and high densities, and using microsatellite-based parentage analyses to measure male fitness...
February 17, 2018: Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution
Harald F Parzer, P David Polly, Armin P Moczek
Insects show relatively little genital variation within species compared to extraordinary and often rapid diversification among species. It has been suggested that selection for reproductive isolation through differences in genital shape might explain this phenomenon. This hypothesis predicts that populations diverge faster in genital shape than in genital size. We tested this prediction in males from 10 dung beetle species with known phylogenetic relationships from the genus Onthophagus (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae), including four species for which we were able to sample multiple populations...
February 8, 2018: Development Genes and Evolution
Victor M Alves, Malva I M Hernandez, Jorge M Lobo
Strategies to deal with global radiation may be related to important aspects of species biology and ecology by reflecting, transmitting or absorbing the radiation of varying wavelengths differently. The elytra capacity to manage infrared, visible and ultraviolet radiations (from 185 to 1400 nm) was assessed with a spectrophotometric analysis in five Canthon species of dung beetles; we calculated the reflectance, transmittance, and absorbance capacity of the elytra of these species. These species have different ecologies: two species preferentially inhabit forest areas (Canthon angularis and Canthon lividus lividus), two species preferentially inhabit open areas (Canthon chalybaeus and Canthon tetraodon) including agricultural crops, and one species does not present a clear habitat preference and can be found in both habitats (Canthon quinquemaculatus)...
January 25, 2018: Photochemistry and Photobiology
Sergei Tarasov
Two Oriental dung beetle genera: Parachorius Harold, 1873 and Cassolus Sharp, 1875 have long had an ambiguous tribal position in Scarabaeinae (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae), but have never been considered as closely related. A recently discovered species representing the morphological link between the two genera gave a hint to their possible close affiliation. To assess phylogenetic and taxonomic placement of these genera, I conducted phylogenetic analyses of global dung beetle samples using morphological (134 taxa, 232 characters) and molecular (551 terminals, 8 gene regions) data...
October 3, 2017: Zootaxa
V C Giménez Gómez, S B Lomáscolo, G A Zurita, F Ocampo
Tolerance to extreme temperatures, thermal limits, and the mechanisms of thermoregulation are related to internal functions of insects and partly define their ecological niche. We study the association between daily activity of dung beetles from the Monte Desert in Argentina and their tolerance to high temperatures. Results indicate that for all three sympatric species studied, Eucranium belenae Ocampo, Anomiopsoides cavifrons (Burmeister), and Anomiopsoides fedemariai Ocampo, daily activity is associated to ground temperature...
December 6, 2017: Neotropical Entomology
Lily Johanna Toro Segovia, Germán Alberto Téllez Ramírez, Diana Carolina Henao Arias, Juan David Rivera Duran, Juan Pablo Bedoya, Jhon Carlos Castaño Osorio
Dung beetles are exposed to a complex microbiological ecosystem during their life cycle. Characterization of novel host-defense peptides (HDP) is essential to understanding the host innate immune response in insects. It constitutes a promising alternative to look for new therapeutic agents against pathogenic microbes. We identified four new HDP, Oxysterlins 1, 2, 3, and 4 from the transcriptome of the Oxysternon conspicillatum dung beetle. These HDP display a highly conserved signal peptide and a mature peptide, characterized by an overall positive charge (cationic) (pI: 10...
2017: PloS One
I Szelecz, N Feddern, C V W Seppey, J Amendt, E A D Mitchell
In forensic science, the use of entomological evidence to estimate the minimum post-mortem interval can be crucial. However, not all cadaver-visiting insects are equally useful. Our focus is on the histerid beetle Saprinus semistriatus (Scriba 1790) (Histeridae; Coleoptera). Histeridae are common predators that feed mainly on dipteran larvae on carrion and dung. We review 23 publications mentioning this species and provide new experimental data on its temporal pattern beneath and on hanging pig cadavers. In a field experiment near Neuchâtel, Switzerland, we recorded the abundance of S...
January 2018: Legal Medicine
Marcelo B Pessôa, Thiago J Izzo, Fernando Z Vaz-de-Mello
The Pantanal is one of the world's largest tropical wetland areas and harbors high mammal biomass. There is no formal list of dung beetle species, and studies on their functional roles have never being carried out in Pantanal. In this study, we identified dung beetle species occurring in the north Pantanal region (Poconé sub-region, Brazil) and studied their functional organization, by measuring morphological, behavioral and phenological traits. We collected 25,278 individuals belonging to 17 genera and 35 species...
2017: PeerJ
José R Verdú, Jorge M Lobo, Francisco Sánchez-Piñero, Belén Gallego, Catherine Numa, Jean-Pierre Lumaret, Vieyle Cortez, Antonio J Ortiz, Mattia Tonelli, Juan P García-Teba, Ana Rey, Alexandra Rodríguez, Jorge Durán
Ivermectin is the most common endectocide used to control parasites affecting livestock. Short-term physiological and behavioural effects of ivermectin on dung beetles may have long-term consequences for beetle populations and ecosystem functioning. Long-term effects of the use of ivermectin can be estimated by comparing dung assemblages and ecosystem functions in areas with conventional ivermectin-treated livestock and environmentally similar areas in which livestock are not treated with veterinary medical products (organic farming)...
November 9, 2017: Science of the Total Environment
Irene Piccini, Beatrice Nervo, Mattias Forshage, Luisella Celi, Claudia Palestrini, Antonio Rolando, Tomas Roslin
Rapid biodiversity loss has emphasized the need to understand how biodiversity affects the provisioning of ecological functions. Of particular interest are species and communities with versatile impacts on multiple parts of the environment, linking processes in the biosphere, lithosphere, and atmosphere to human interests in the anthroposphere (in this case, cattle farming). In this study, we examine the role of a specific group of insects - beetles feeding on cattle dung - on multiple ecological functions spanning these spheres (dung removal, soil nutrient content and greenhouse gas emissions)...
March 2018: Science of the Total Environment
Victor Michelon Alves, Malva Isabel Medina Hernández
The effects of transgenic compounds on non-target organisms remain poorly understood, especially in native insect species. Morphological changes (e.g., changes in body size and shape) may reflect possible responses to environmental stressors, like transgenic toxins. The dung beetle Canthon quinquemaculatus (Coleoptera: Scarabaeinae) is a non-target species found in transgenic crops. We evaluated whether C. quinquemaculatus individuals inhabiting corn fields cultivated with different seed types (conventional, creole and transgenic) present modifications in body shape compared to individuals inhabiting adjacent native forest fragments...
October 21, 2017: Insects
Mingxia Sun, Esther Appel, Alexander Kovalev, Elena V Gorb, Aiping Liang, Stanislav N Gorb
The elytral surface of dung beetles is generally accepted to be self-cleaning due to its anti-adhesive properties. In this article, the wettability and adhesive properties of elytral surface (intact and treated with Acetone and Ethanol) of the beetle Geotrupes stercorarius were characterized. Since these properties are influenced by the surface structure and chemistry, the micro- and nanostructure of the elytra were observed using scanning electron microscopy and the surface roughness were estimated with white light interferometery, whereas the water contact angle (CA) and adhesion force of the elytra were evaluated using contact angle measurement device and force transducer, respectively...
October 24, 2017: Bioinspiration & Biomimetics
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