Improving dung beetle activity in winter (B.ERM.0213)
Dung beetles bury and consume cattle and sheep dung. In the process they put nutrients in the soil to help new grass grow. However, there is a 2-3 month gap in dung beetle activity across southern Australia in winter and early spring. At this time nutrients are not incorporated into the soil, meaning an important opportunity is missed to minimise dung pollution and enhance pasture growth in spring.
Research undertaken by CSIRO
What are we doing?
This project is importing two species of climate-matched dung beetles from France and Spain in preparation for release at targeted test sites in September, 2014. Further releases will occur in September, 2015 following a second project focussed on mass-rearing. It is hoped these beetles will fill the gap in dung beetle activity across higher rainfall areas in southern Australia, cutting dung pollution and increasing farm productivity.