A global community of nature enthusiasts
photographing and learning about wildlife
Dung beetles eat dung excreted by herbivores and omnivores, and prefer that produced by the former. Many of them also feed on mushrooms and decaying leaves and fruits. Those that eat dung do not need to eat or drink anything else, because the dung provides all the necessary nutrients. Most dung beetles search for dung using their sensitive sense of smell. Some of the smaller species simply attach themselves to the dung-providers to wait for their reward. After capturing the dung, a dung beetle will roll it, following a straight line despite all obstacles. Sometimes dung beetles will try to steal the dung ball of another beetle, so the dung beetles have to move rapidly away from a dung pile once they have rolled their ball to prevent it from being stolen. Dung beetles can roll up to 50 times their weight.
Dung beetles live in many different habitats, including desert, farmland, forest, and grasslands. They do not prefer extremely cold or dry weather. They are found on all continents except Antarctica.