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Dor Beetle: recycling for all

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Dor Beetle: recycling for all

Beauty or the beast? An ugly "creepy crawly" or an amazingly coloured beetle?

The dor beetle (Geotrupes stercorarius) is bit of a beast I suppose, it certainly does not have a pretty face. It is often found on cow dung and actually spends a lot of time under ground where it digs shafts below the dung and burying it. They then use it to lay their eggs in so that the larvae have an instant food supply. My book says that this species is also called the lousy watchman because it is commonly infested with mites! Not a very pleasant little creature then.

But see them plodding along a woodland or heathland path in bright sunshine and they are wonderfully metalic in colour varying between blue and green as the angle between them and the sun changes. Their legs, too, despite being 'hairy' share this wonderful colouring. As well as the brilliant coloroung they are also very useful creatures clearing up waste products and helping in the recycling of materials by turning cow dung back to fertile soil which will support further plant life in future and provide more food for the hungy cow which is food and drink for us.

So, spare a thought for the dor beetle; may be it is not so ugly after all?


 

If you would like to see the complete series that this post is part of click here ---->
This nature note was written by ----> Peter Orchard
This nature nore was written ----> 3 years 3 months ago

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