DUNG BEETLE SPECIES

 

 

 

Onothophagus vacca

Identifying features

​Onthophagus vacca is a small beetle (7 – 13mm) with a shiny metallic green or bronze pronotum and head. Wing covers are pale orange-brown with occasional dark markings. The legs are black. Both sexes have a distinct ridge on the head in front of the eyes – more pronounced in females. Males have a large single lamina (part of the optic lobe) on the head, ending in a single point. There is a large indentation at the front of the pronotum. Females’ lamina ends in two points and have a projection at the front of the pronotum.

Distribution

Onthophagus vacca is distributed throughout southern Europe and into Asia.  In Western Australia, trial colonies have been released in Manjimup and Youngs Siding with ongoing monitoring to determine establishment.

Additional Information

Onthophagus vacca is a day flying beetle. It is expected to emerge and begin laying eggs from September onwards. It is active until mid-summer. Onthophagus vacca is generally considered to have one generation a year. Information of the Onthophagus vacca breeding behaviour in Australia is being documented to gain a more accurate understanding of their breeding in the southern hemisphere. This is necessary to overcome previous failed attempts at introducing the species to Australia.

 

16 Dr B Doube & D. Pow at release

16 Dr B Doube & D. Pow at release

9 Farm rearing bed

9 Farm rearing bed

17 Vacca released 19th September 2017

17 Vacca released 19th September 2017

20 O. vacca in dung

20 O. vacca in dung

10 Keeping vacca in & others out

10 Keeping vacca in & others out

15 Accelerating the breeding process

15 Accelerating the breeding process

19a Beetles released in Manjimup paddock

19a Beetles released in Manjimup paddock

21 Vacca bucket trial D. Pow

21 Vacca bucket trial D. Pow

1 onthophagus_vacca_male KV Makarov

1 onthophagus_vacca_male KV Makarov

11 Farm bed 2

11 Farm bed 2

13 Covered in fly screen

13 Covered in fly screen

14 Protected site

14 Protected site

8 Bed preparation

8 Bed preparation

12 Curious cows Bed 2

12 Curious cows Bed 2

7 No escapes

7 No escapes

18 Vacca in pad 11 Oct 2017

18 Vacca in pad 11 Oct 2017

3 Delivery container

3 Delivery container

4 Transported in vermiculite

4 Transported in vermiculite

19 Vacca 2 in pad 11 Oct 2017

19 Vacca 2 in pad 11 Oct 2017

2 Ex-Creation Care

2 Ex-Creation Care

6 First feed

6 First feed

5 Temporary housing

5 Temporary housing

Warren Catchments Council | 52 Bath St, Manjimup WA 6258 | Tel: (08) 9771 8180 | info@warrencc.org.au

 
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